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Quintessence Int 42 (2011), No. 5     1. Apr. 2011
Quintessence Int 42 (2011), No. 5  (01.04.2011)

Page 419-422, PubMed:21519562


Unusual fatal petrositis presenting as myofascial pain and dysfunction of the temporal muscle
Loretan, Stefan / Duvoisin, Bernard / Scolozzi, Paolo
Petrositis is a rare and severe complication of acute otitis media and mastoiditis. Although the extension of the inflammatory process from the petrous apex to the adjacent Meckel cave can lead to trigeminal pain, an irritation of the trigeminal nerve roots resulting in acute or chronic hyperactivity of masticatory muscles has never been reported. We report here the unusual case of an 86-year-old man who presented with a handicapping myofascial pain and dysfunction syndrome of the right temporal muscle as a heralding manifestation of an unusual form of petrositis. The patient progressively developed a retropharyngeal abscess, a right sphenoid sinusitis, and fatal meningitis. This case demonstrated that (1) myofascial pain and dysfunction syndrome that does not respond to conventional treatments may suggest an unusual etiology and warrant further medical investigations and a detailed medical history and that (2) petrositis can manifest itself with atypical clinical symptoms and radiologic signs.

Keywords: myofascial pain and dysfunction syndrome, nasopharyngeal abscess, petrositis, sphenoid sinusitis