Comparison of Preoperative Temporal Bone CT with Intraoperative Findings in Patients with Cholesteatoma

Document Type : Original


1 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Kashani Hospital, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

2 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Loghman Hospital, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.


Cholesteatoma is traditionally diagnosed by otoscopic examination and treated by surgery. The necessity for imaging in an uncomplicated case is controversial. This study was planned to investigate the usefulness of a preoperative high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT) scan in depicting the status of middle ear structures in the presence of cholesteatoma and also to compare the correspondence between pre- and intraoperative CT findings in patients with cholesteatoma.
Materials and Methods:
This prospective descriptive study was performed from January 2009 to May 2011 in 36 patients with cholesteatoma who were referred to the Kashani and Al-Zahra Clinics of Otolaryngology. Preoperative high-resolution temporal bone CT scans (axial and coronal views) were carried out and compared with intraoperative findings.
Evaluation of 36 patients and their CT scans revealed excellent correlation for sigmoid plate erosion, widening of aditus, and erosion of scutum; good correlation for erosion of malleus and tegmen; moderate correlation for lateral canal fistula (LCF) and erosion of mastoid air cells; and poor correlation for facial nerve dehiscence (FND), incus, and stapes erosion. 
A preoperative CT scan may be helpful in relation to diagnosis and decision making for surgery in cases of cholesteatoma and ossicular erosion. The CT scan can accurately predict the extent of disease and is helpful for detection of lateral canal fistula, erosions of dural plate, and ossicular erosions. However it is not able to distinguish between cholesteatoma and mucosal disease, facial nerve dehiscency, incus, and stapes erosion. 


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