To send this article to your account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Tympanic middle ears have evolved multiple times independently among vertebrates, and share common features. We review flexibility within tympanic middle ears and consider its physiological and clinical implications.
The chain of conducting elements is flexible: even the ‘single ossicle’ ears of most non-mammalian tetrapods are functionally ‘double ossicle’ ears due to mobile articulations between the stapes and extrastapes; there may also be bending within individual elements.
Simple models suggest that flexibility will generally reduce the transmission of sound energy through the middle ear, although in certain theoretical situations flexibility within or between conducting elements might improve transmission. The most obvious role of middle-ear flexibility is to protect the inner ear from high-amplitude displacements.
Inter-ossicular joint dysfunction is associated with a number of pathologies in humans. We examine attempts to improve prosthesis design by incorporating flexible components.
Many ENT conditions can be treated in the emergency clinic on an ambulatory basis. Our clinic traditionally had been run by foundation year two and specialty trainee doctors (period one). However, with perceived increasing inexperience, a dedicated registrar was assigned to support the clinic (period two). This study compared admission and discharge rates for periods one and two to assess if greater registrar input affected discharge rate; an increase in discharge rate was used as a surrogate marker of efficiency.
Data was collected prospectively for patients seen in the ENT emergency clinic between 1 August 2009 and 31 July 2011. Time period one included data from patients seen between 1 August 2009 and 31 July 2010, and time period two included data collected between 1 August 2010 and 31 July 2011.
The introduction of greater registrar support increased the number of patients that were discharged, and led to a reduction in the number of children requiring the operating theatre.
The findings, which were determined using clinic outcomes as markers of the quality of care, highlighted the benefits of increasing senior input within the ENT emergency clinic.
To determine the long-term efficacy of a fixed-dose intratympanic gentamicin treatment regime in controlling unilateral Ménière's disease.
Pfleiderer (1998) published two-year follow-up results for a series of 16 patients treated with a 4-day, 12-dose intratympanic gentamicin regime for unilateral Ménière's disease that was refractory to medical treatment. In 2010, a long-term telephone follow up (mean 17 years and 3 months) of this same cohort was conducted to determine long-term vertigo control. Of the 16 patients, 13 were eligible for the long-term follow up.
At 2 years' follow up, all 16 patients experienced substantial control of vertigo, with complete control achieved in 87 per cent of cases. At the long-term follow up, 9 of the 13 eligible patients were contactable, and all reported complete control of vertigo.
Fixed-dose intratympanic gentamicin controlled symptomatic unilateral Ménière's disease in both the short and long term.
This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of otomycosis and aetiological agents in Khouzestan province, south-west Iran.
This cross-sectional study examined and cultured 881 swabs from suspected external otitis cases, collected from throughout Khouzestan province. Fungal agents were identified by slide culture and complementary tests when necessary.
The mean patient age was 37 years. The 20–39 year age group had the highest prevalence of otomycosis: 293 cases, comprising 162 (55.3 per cent) women and 131 (44.7 per cent) men. The seasonal distribution of cases was: summer, 44.7 per cent; autumn, 28.7 per cent; winter, 14.7 per cent; and spring, 11.9 per cent. The fungal agents isolated were Aspergillus niger (67.2 per cent), Aspergillus flavus (13 per cent), Candida albicans (11.6 per cent), Aspergillus fumigatus (6.2 per cent) and penicillium species (2 per cent).
Fungal otomycosis is still one of the most important external ear diseases. In this study in south-west Iran, Aspergillus niger was the predominant aetiological agent. However, clinicians should be cautious of candidal otomycosis, which has a lower rate of incidence but is more prevalent among 20–39 year olds.
There is a considerable scarcity of reliable population-based data on the prevalence of preventable ear disorders in developing countries. This study was conducted to determine the prevalence of preventable ear disorders in primary school children (aged 5 to 12 years) in northern India.
A pro forma questionnaire was used to screen 15 718 primary school children in New Delhi for ear disorders. Ear examinations were conducted using otoscopy and impedance audiometry.
Impacted cerumen was prevalent in 7.93 per cent of schoolchildren, 4.79 per cent suffered from chronic otitis media and 3.06 per cent suffered from otitis media with effusion. Acute otitis media was detected in 0.65 per cent and foreign bodies were found in 0.34 per cent of the children.
Preventable ear diseases posed a significant health problem among children at primary school level. Regular screening of children during this stage would ensure that their school lives were not affected by hearing impairments or preventable ear disorders. Information gathered in this study will help in effective treatment prioritisation of ear disorders, planning and resource allocation.
Mutations in the genes for connexin 26 (GJB2) and connexin 30 (GJB6) play an important role in autosomal recessive, non-syndromic hearing loss. This study aimed to detect the 35delG and 167delT mutations of the GJB2 gene and the del(GJB6-D13S1830) mutation of the GJB6 gene in paediatric patients diagnosed with congenital, non-syndromic hearing loss and treated with cochlear implantation in Mediterranean Turkey.
Materials and method:
We included 94 children diagnosed with congenital, non-syndromic hearing loss and treated with cochlear implantation. Blood samples were collected, DNA extracted and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay performed to enable molecular diagnosis of mutations.
Of the 94 children analysed, the 35delG mutation was detected in 12 (12.7 per cent): 10 (83.3 per cent) were homozygous and 2 (16.7 per cent) heterozygous mutant. The 167delT and del(GJB6-D13S1830) mutations were not detected.
The GJB2-35delG mutation is a major cause of congenital, non-syndromic hearing loss in this study population.
To evaluate patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and normal hearing over 10 years, compared with healthy controls.
Thirty patients diagnosed with systemic lupus erythematosus were evaluated in a prospective, descriptive study. Eight patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria, i.e. normal otoscopy, normal hearing, normal imaging and disease duration of less than one year. Eleven healthy companions of ENT patients were recruited as controls.
At study commencement, the mean patient age was 32.75 years (range, 15–49 years) and there were no statistically significant audiometric differences between patients and controls. No statistically significant audiometric changes were found either within or between the patient and control groups at 10-year follow up.
These results supply no evidence for progressive hearing loss in systemic lupus erythematosus patients with no hearing involvement at study commencement. Therefore, we recommend audiometric tests only for systemic lupus erythematosus patients complaining of hearing loss, or for other clinical purposes. It is conceivable that asymptomatic hearing loss could be observed over a more extended follow-up period (i.e. more than 10 years).
Frontal sinus surgery continues to challenge even the most experienced endoscopic sinus surgeon. Revision frontal sinus surgery is even more challenging. The use of stents in frontal sinus surgery has long been described, as an attempt to decrease the incidence of synechiae and stenosis.
This study included five patients who had previously undergone functional endoscopic sinus surgery but suffered recurrence of frontal sinusitis. Two had bilateral disease. Double J stents were used after endoscopic frontal sinusotomy. The stents were left in place for six months.
Four of the 5 patients (6 out of 7 sinuses) had a patent frontal outflow tract after 10 to 36 months’ follow up.
Double J stents can be used as frontal sinus stents. They are well tolerated by patients, easily applied, and self-retaining with no need for sutures. The length of the stent can be altered according to the patient's anatomy and pathology.
The recurrent laryngeal nerve can be injured during surgery. This study investigated recurrent laryngeal nerve reinnervation.
To study the short-term effects of primary anastomosis of the recurrent laryngeal nerve, by laryngeal electromyography and histopathological analysis, in a rabbit model.
Twenty Zealand rabbits underwent either right recurrent laryngeal nerve (1) transection with excision of 1 cm or (2) transection and end-to-end primary anastomosis. Vocal fold movements, laryngeal electromyography results and histological changes were recorded.
Vocal fold analysis showed a paramedian vocal fold in both groups, with perceptible vibratory movements in group two. Electromyography revealed total denervation potentials in group one, but denervation and regeneration signs in group two. Histopathologically, hyperkeratosis and parakeratosis of the vocal fold mucosa were seen in group one, and signs of parakeratosis and hyperplasia in group two.
Even under ideal conditions for primary recurrent laryngeal nerve anastomosis, a return to normal muscle function is unlikely. However, such anastomosis prevents muscle atrophy, and should be performed as soon as possible. The degree of nerve recovery is associated with the number, amplitude and myelination level of fibrils returning to the original motor end-plaque.
To evaluate the incidence of pharyngocutaneous fistula after pharyngolaryngectomy with and without a Montgomery salivary stent.
Retrospective analysis of patients with factors that predispose to the development of pharyngocutaneous fistula (i.e. disease extending to the supraglottic region, base of the tongue or pyriform sinuses, and/or radiochemotherapy).
Between 2002 and 2008, 85 pharyngolaryngectomies were performed in our clinic. Of these patients, 31 were at increased risk of fistula development, of whom 45 per cent developed fistulas post-operatively. This subgroup of 31 patients was compared with a second subgroup of 22 patients at high risk of fistula development, treated between 2009 and 2011 with pharyngolaryngectomy and with a Montgomery salivary stent placed in advance during closure of the neopharynx.
Statistical analysis showed a significant reduction in the rate of fistula development, from 45 to 9 per cent (p < 0.01), with application of the salivary stent.
These data confirm the preventive effect of a salivary stent placed during pharyngolaryngectomy, for patients at high risk of fistula development.
The use of the stapes coupling technique, employed in the Vibrant Soundbridge system, is technically less demanding than the vibroplasty technique, and is more likely to generate a positive outcome without significantly changing residual hearing or resulting in medical or surgical complication.
We report a patient with repeated left ossiculoplasty failure, who was successfully implanted with a Vibrant Soundbridge.
We believe that the stapes coupling technique can provide natural stimulation to the inner ear, resulting in a better perceived sound quality.
Chondrodermatitis nodularis chronica helicis is a common benign condition of the pinna. It presents as a painful, well demarcated nodule on the pinna that may be associated with surrounding erythema or an overlying crust.
This paper describes techniques for the excision of chondrodermatitis nodularis chronica helicis on both the helix and anti-helix, and reconstruction of the defect.
Both methods give an excellent cosmetic result and can be performed under local anaesthetic. Excising and smoothing down the cartilage decreases the likelihood of recurrence as a smooth contour to the ear is achieved.
Infants are obligate nasal breathers. Cleft palate closure may result in upper airway compromise. We describe children undergoing corrective palatal surgery who required unplanned airway support.
Tertiary referral unit.
Retrospective study (2007–2009) of 157 cleft palate procedures (70 primary procedures) in 43 patients. Exclusion criteria comprised combined cleft lip and palate, secondary palate procedure, and pre-existing airway support.
The children's mean age was 7.5 months and their mean weight 7.72 kg. Eight children were syndromic, and eight underwent pre-operative sleep studies (five positive, three negative). Post-operatively, five developed respiratory distress and four required oxygen, both events significantly associated with pre-operative obstructive sleep apnoea (p = 0.001 and 0.015, respectively). Four desaturated within 24 hours. Five required a nasopharyngeal airway. Hospital stay (mean, 4 days) was significantly associated with obstructive sleep apnoea (p = 0.002) and nasopharyngeal airway insertion (p = 0.017).
Pre-operative obstructive sleep apnoea correlated significantly with post-operative respiratory distress, supplementary oxygen requirement, nasopharyngeal airway insertion and hospital stay. We recommend pre-operative sleep investigations for all children undergoing cleft palate repair, to enable appropriate timing of the procedure.
We present an extremely rare case of congenital cholesteatoma in identical twins.
Case report of congenital cholesteatoma in identical twins, and a literature review, are presented.
Both cases presented to the ENT out-patient clinic, but with different clinical pictures. Both were managed surgically.
Congenital cholesteatoma presents as a whitish mass in the middle ear, with an intact tympanic membrane. It is a rare entity comprising between 3.7 and 24 per cent of total cholesteatoma cases. The key to its diagnosis is the absence of previous ear infection, ear surgery and local trauma. To our best knowledge, this paper represents the first report in the world literature of congenital cholesteatoma in identical twins.
A spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leak can sometimes only become apparent following grommet insertion and usually represents dehiscence of the tegmen tympani, which is an uncommon condition.
This report aimed to reaffirm the importance of recognising this unusual presentation and outline management options.
A 63-year-old man with conductive hearing loss and type B (flat) tympanometry underwent grommet insertion into his left ear, which resulted in cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea. A defect of the tegmen tympani was found. This was successfully repaired via a transmastoid approach using a multi-layered grafting technique.
Dehiscence of the tegmen tympani is uncommon and may only come to light following grommet insertion, which may be problematic for the uninformed otolaryngologist. Education is important to ensure early recognition and appropriate management.
Concha bullosa is the pneumatisation of intranasal conchae (usually the middle turbinate, and rarely the inferior or superior turbinate); however, the term is generally used to describe aeration of the middle concha. Superior concha bullosa is a rare finding, and only a few cases of inferior concha bullosa have been reported in the medical literature. When symptomatic, concha bullosa may cause various problems including nasal congestion, headache, postnasal drip, anosmia and, sometimes, epiphora.
Computed tomography, following history-taking and physical examination, is a valuable tool in diagnosing turbinate pneumatisation. This article presents a very rare case with bilateral triple conchae pneumatisations.
The symptomatology, diagnosis and treatment options for cases of multiple concha bullosa are discussed. The surgical interventions performed in the presented case are briefly described.
The presented patient had pneumatisation of all six turbinates. In such cases, we propose that this condition be termed ‘conchae bullosis’ rather than ‘conchae bullosa’, in a similar fashion to the use of nasal polyposis as the plural form of nasal polyp.
Allergic reactions to Prolene are rare. This paper reports a nasal tip abscess which developed in a patient with an adverse skin reaction to Prolene after rhinoplasty.
Methods and results:
A 26-year-old woman presented with painful, progressive nasal tip swelling and redness. She had undergone septo-rhinoplasty two years previously. She was initially treated with endonasal drainage of the abscess and antibiotics, but a revision rhinoplasty three months later became necessary because of recurrent abscess formation. Intra-operative findings included granulation tissue with pockets of pus and knotted Prolene sutures at the tip-defining points of the lower lateral cartilages. She was patch-tested with Prolene and a cutaneous Prolene suture was placed on her back; an adverse skin reaction was seen for the latter.
Use of non-absorbable sutures, such as Prolene, in the subcutaneous layer may be a potential, rare risk factor for adverse skin reactions.
This paper reports on two rare cases of neonatal airway lesions with differing aetiology that were successfully managed by surgery, and provides a review of the literature on neonatal stridor and airway lesions.
In the first case report, a newborn presented with a nasopharyngeal teratoma. In the second case report, a newborn presented with a congenital laryngeal saccular cyst. Difficulties in the diagnosis of these lesions, and surgical and anaesthetic challenges in their management are discussed.
Every case of neonatal airway distress must be evaluated and the cause of stridor needs to be established. It is important that rare lesions such as teratomas and laryngeal cysts are not overlooked; a high index of suspicion for these congenital anomalies is necessary. These airway lesions should be managed in an institutional setting by a multidisciplinary team.
To describe a case of unwitnessed lithium ion disc battery ingestion, with a review of radiology findings and current best practice management.
A three-year-old girl presented following ingestion of a foreign body, which her four-year-old brother claimed was a one pound coin. The patient was managed non-urgently and transferred for specialist ENT assessment 6 hours following the initial ingestion, with no evidence of airway compromise. A corroded battery was removed from the level of the cricopharyngeus after 8 hours, with an associated circumferential mucosal burn.
There is increasing concern regarding the acknowledged rising incidence of lithium ion disc battery ingestion. The lack of a high index of suspicion and the inability to recognise subtleties on imaging may lead to suboptimal management with a higher degree of unnecessary immediate and delayed morbidity. The recently published American Academy of Pediatrics Guidelines may guide the approach to managing battery ingestions.