Traumatic macroglossia

Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 1993 Sep;102(9):729-30. doi: 10.1177/000348949310200915.


A case of severe macroglossia resulting from trauma (tongue biting) during eclampsia and causing respiratory obstruction is described. Despite medical treatment with steroids and antibiotics for a week, followed by tracheostomy, no significant improvement was observed. After an energetic but cautious maneuver of reducing and restraining the tongue in the oral cavity, the swelling reduced dramatically in 24 to 48 hours. Earlier manual replacement of the tongue into the oral cavity is advised in order to arrest the cycle of venous and lymphatic obstruction and congestion that leads to further edema and increased tongue swelling. The mechanism of traumatic macroglossia is discussed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Eclampsia / complications
  • Female
  • Hematoma / etiology
  • Humans
  • Macroglossia / etiology*
  • Macroglossia / therapy
  • Oral Hemorrhage / etiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Puerperal Disorders / complications
  • Seizures / complications
  • Tongue / injuries*