Prevalence of facial canal dehiscence and of persistent stapedial artery in the human middle ear: a report of 1000 temporal bones

Laryngoscope. 1994 Mar;104(3 Pt 1):309-20. doi: 10.1288/00005537-199403000-00012.


A total of 1000 temporal bones were used to study the prevalence of facial canal dehiscence and of persistent stapedial artery in detail. Of the temporal bones studied, 560 (56%) contained at least one facial canal dehiscence. There was a 76.3% prevalence of bilaterality of this canal wall gap. The most common site of dehiscence was the oval window area. The concept of microdehiscence of the facial canal is introduced. One third of the temporal bones observed had a microdehiscence of the facial canal, usually located at the oval window area (74.9%) and found bilaterally 40% of the time. The authors found a 0.48% prevalence (5 out of 1045) of persistent stapedial artery. This is the first histological study of temporal bones to report a prevalence of this vascular anomaly.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arteries / abnormalities
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Ear, Middle / abnormalities*
  • Ear, Middle / blood supply
  • Ear, Middle / innervation
  • Ear, Middle / pathology*
  • Facial Nerve / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Stapedius / blood supply
  • Stapedius / pathology
  • Temporal Bone / abnormalities*
  • Temporal Bone / pathology*