Intracranial abscesses associated with chronic suppurative otitis media

Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2005 Oct;262(10):847-51. doi: 10.1007/s00405-004-0903-0. Epub 2005 Jun 15.

Abstract

Intracranial abscesses are serious complications of chronic suppurative otitis media (COM). This study included 32 patients presenting with intracranial abscesses from 780 patients hospitalized for treatment of COM. The 32 patients had 59 intracranial complications. Perisinus abscess (13 of 32) was the most common intracranial abscess, followed by temporal lobe abscess (8 of 32), epidural abscess (7 of 32), cerebellar abscess (6 of 32) and subdural empyema (2 of 32). Headache (93%), fever (87%) and altered mental status (62%) were the most common presenting symptoms and signs, along with symptoms of COM. All patients were treated with intravenous antibiotics and canal wall down mastoidectomy. Cholesteatoma with granulation tissue and bony defects at the sinus plate and/or dural plate were seen in most of the patients. Gram negative bacilli and anaerobes were the most common organisms cultured from the abscesses. Three patients had neurological sequels. One patient died. The early diagnosis of these complications requires a high index of suspicion and imaging studies. A multidisciplinary and coordinated approach is important for the management of these patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Brain Abscess / etiology*
  • Brain Abscess / physiopathology
  • Brain Abscess / therapy
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cholesteatoma / complications
  • Chronic Disease
  • Cranial Nerve Diseases
  • Empyema, Subdural / etiology
  • Empyema, Subdural / physiopathology
  • Empyema, Subdural / therapy
  • Epidural Abscess / etiology
  • Epidural Abscess / physiopathology
  • Epidural Abscess / therapy
  • Female
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mastoid / surgery
  • Middle Aged
  • Otitis Media, Suppurative / complications*
  • Otitis Media, Suppurative / physiopathology
  • Otitis Media, Suppurative / therapy
  • Retrospective Studies