The sphenoid sinus occupies a central location in transsphenoidal surgery (TSS). It is important to identify relevant anatomical landmarks to enter the sphenoid sinus and sellar region properly. The aim of this study was to identify anatomical landmarks and their value in single-nostril endonasal TSS. A retrospective study was performed to review 148 cases of single-nostril endonasal TSS for pituitary lesions. The structure of the nasal cavities and sphenoid sinus, the position of apertures of the sphenoid sinus and relevant arteries and the morphological characteristics of the anterior wall of the sphenoid sinus and sellar floor were observed and recorded. The important anatomical landmarks included the mucosal aperture of the sphenoid sinus, a blunt longitudinal prominence on the posterior nasal septum, the osseocartilaginous junction of the nasal septum, the ‘bow sign’ of the anterior wall of the sphenoid sinus, the osseous aperture and its relationship with the nutrient arteries, the bulge of the sellar floor and the carotid protuberance. These landmarks outlined a clear route to the sella turcica with an optimal view and lesser tissue damage. Although morphological variation may exist, the position of these landmarks was generally consistent. Locating the sphenoid sinus aperture is the gold standard to direct the surgical route of TSS. The ‘bow sign’ and the sellar bulge are critical landmarks for accurate entry into the sphenoid sinus and sella fossa, respectively.
transsphenoidal approach; nasal cavity; sphenoid sinus; anatomical; landmark; pituitary
For osteoblastoma, with its predilection for the spinal column and appendicular skeleton, the skull is an unusual site, and paranasal sinus involvement is very rare. Herein, we report on a case in which the disease was located within the sphenoid bone. To the best of our knowledge, this is the 4th reported case of osteoblastoma with a sphenoid origin (1). We report an osteoblastoma of the sphenoid sinus in a 12-year-old girl who presented with exophthalmos. Computed tomography (CT) demonstrated an expansile lesion of the sphenoid which caused the orbital contents to be compressed and deviated to the right. In the magnetic resonance imaging scan, the lesion was found to invade the cranial base in the frontal and temporal region, approximating to the cavernous sinus and internal carotid artery on the right. Bilateral fronto-orbital craniotomy was performed. Histologically, the lesion was composed of proliferating osteoblasts along with vascular stroma. The tumor was described as an aggressive osteoblastoma. In the follow-up CT four months later, a pathological mass was observed in the area of the nasal septum, and a signal void was present on all sequences in the densely sclerotic areas. A second resection was performed. The patient has been disease-free for 61 months. Herein, we present the diagnosis and management of this unusual lesion. The histopathology and the imaging characteristics are shown.
sphenoid bone; osteoblastoma
To report a rare case of unilateral cavernous sinus thrombosis caused by contralateral sphenoid sinusitis.
A 33-year-old female visited our hospital for severe, right-sided, temporal headache, chemosis, periorbital edema, and proptosis. These signs were associated with congested erythematous nasal mucosa with purulent discharge from the right superior nasal meatus. Contrast enhanced CT showed dilated left superior ophthalmic vein, suggestive of thrombosis, contrast enhancement of the left cavernous sinuses, and dilation of cavernous sinus, indicating cavernous sinus inflammation. The right maxillary, ethmoid and sphenoid sinuses showed mucosal thickening and retention of purulent material. She was diagnosed with cavernous sinus thrombosis caused by contralateral sphenoid sinusitis. All clinical symptoms and signs improved after endoscopic sphenoidotomy and appropriate medical treatment.
Sphenoiditis can cause contralateral cavernous sinus thrombosis. Early surgical sphenoidotomy and aggressive medical treatment are the cornerstones of successful management of this life-threatening complication.
Carvenous sinus thrombosis; Sphenoiditis; Contralaterally; Endoscopy sinus surgery
Cholesterol granuloma (CG) is usually associated with chronic middle ear disease, and is not common in the paranasal sinuses. Additionally, it is very rare for cases of CG to be associated with a fungal infection. However, in this paper, we report a case of sphenoid sinus CG that is associated with aspergilloma in a 78-year-old male patient who presented with right hemifacial pain, headache and toothache. CT revealed the presence of an expansile cystic mass lesion in the sphenoid sinus that showed a high signal intensity on both the T1 and T2 weighted images. This mass was later determined to be CG. The suspected etiologic mechanisms of both CG and aspergilloma of the paranasal sinuses are similar, and impaired drainage and obstruction of the ventilation of the paranasal sinuses are considered to be the causative mechanism of both diseases. Overall, the results of this study indicate that the use of MRI findings could be helpful for differentiating CG from other paranasal sinus mass lesions.
Cholesterol granuloma; Aspergilloma; Sphenoid sinus
Pneumosinus dilatans (PSD), first described by Meyes in 1898, is an abnormal dilatation of one or more of the paranasal sinuses without bony erosion. The term sinus pneumocele indicates the presence of bony erosion. Review of the literature from 1968 to 1992 revealed 24 cases of idiopathic PSD and 17 cases of pneumocele of various paranasal sinuses. PSD occurred most commonly in the frontal sinus. Males were more often affected than females. The average age for males ranged from 16.5 for the maxillary sinus to 35.5 years for the sphenoid sinus. Pneumoceles occurred most commonly in the maxillary sinus. The average age for males ranged from 29 years for the frontal sinus and 47 years for the ethmoid sinus. Two patients (1 pneumocele and 1 PSD) had a temporary loss of vision. We report the case of a 37-year-old mountain climber who experienced temporary loss of vision in his left eye above 3000 m. Vision returned below 2000 m. High resolution computed tomography scan revealed pneumosinus dilatans of the sphenoid sinus with dehiscence of the optic canal on the left side. Endonasal microendoscopic resection of the anterior wall of the left sphenoid sinus was performed. The patient has remained symptom-free after 2 years of follow-up. Pneumosinus dilatans should always be considered in the differential diagnosis of sudden visual loss associated with atmospheric pressure changes.
Eosinophilic mucin rhinosinusitis is an inflammatory pathological condition of the nose and paranasal sinuses. It is rare, occurs in immunocompetent patients and is characterised by peripheral eosinophilia and extensive bilateral sinus disease. To the best of our knowledge, visual loss with this condition has not been previously reported.
We present the case of a 26-year-old Asian woman with a background history of chronic sinusitis who presented with acute left-sided visual loss. Imaging showed significant opacification in the frontal, ethmoidal and sphenoidal sinuses as well as evidence of a unilateral optic neuritis. Histological analysis of sinus mucin revealed dense eosinophilic infiltrate and, despite medical and surgical intervention, vision was not restored in her left eye.
We introduce visual loss as a complication of eosinophilic mucin rhinosinusitis. This adds further evidence to previous reports in the literature that optic neuropathy in sinusitis can occur secondary to non-compressive mechanisms. We also describe a rare finding: the vision in this patient did not improve following steroid therapy, antifungal therapy or surgical intervention. There are very few such cases described in the literature. We conclude that chronic sinusitis is an indolent inflammatory process which can cause visual loss and we reiterate the importance of recognizing and considering sinusitis as a cause of visual loss in patients in order that prompt medical and surgical treatment of the underlying disease can be initiated.
Isolated sphenoid sinusitis (ISS) is a rare entity. ISS accounts for about 1–2% of all sinus infections. Isolated sphenoid sinus involvement may include mucoceles, pyoceles and isolated mycotic infections. We report a case of isolated sphenoid pyocele in a 35 year-old female who presented in August 2007 with frontal and occipital headache, post nasal discharge and bilateral nasal obstruction for 6 years. CT scan showed isolated right sphenoid sinusitis. Diagnostic nasal endoscopy showed a streak of post nasal discharge on right side above the torus tubaris confirming right sphenoiditis. A cyst in the nasopharynx was incidentally detected which was confirmed by fluid aspiration to be Thornwaldt’s cyst (TC). TCs have reported prevalence of 0.2–5% and though most are asymptomatic their location renders them vulnerable to infection. Sphenoidotomy was done and the cyst in the nasopharynx was removed and marsupialised. Postoperative course was uneventful.
Sphenoid pyocele; Thornwaldt’s cyst; Nasopharyngeal bursa
Eight cases of paranasal sinus tumors with central skull base disease are presented. Each patient had coned down noncontrast and contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies to evaluate the tumor margins and any potential tumor spread into the cavernous sinuses, V2 and the Vidian nerve. Two patients had tumors that extended up to the face of the sphenoid bone and one had a tumor in the ventral cavernous sinus. These three patients had a complete tumor resection with postoperative irradiation. Two more patients had extensive tumor invasion of the central skull base, one was treated with only irradiation, one refused treatment. Three more patients had tumors that involved the ventral portion of the sphenoid bone with limited neural tumor extension. Two of these patients had surgery with cavernous sinus dissections followed by irradiation. One patient delayed treatment for 2 months and when he returned he had a more extensive tumor and was considered incurable by surgery. He refused further treatment. The technique of the focused MR examination and its impact on treatment planning is discussed.
Pituitary tumors from lactotrope cells account for about 40% of all functioning pituitary cancers. Men tend to present with a larger, more invasive and rapid growth prolactinomas than women, possibly because hypogonadism features are less evident.
A 27-year-old, previously asymptomatic Saudi man presented with a 3-day history of emesis with severe left-sided frontal headache, left face and right upper limb numbness, with signs of obstructive hydrocephalus. Brain Computed Tomography (CT) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) revealed a giant pituitary mass occupying several regions (sellar, infra-sellar, and supra-sellar) measuring 6.5 × 5.7 × 5.9 cm, and invading the sphenoid sinus as well as the cavernous sinuses bilaterally, with intra-pituitary hemorrhage compressing the third ventricle causing obstructive hydrocephalus. Prolactin levels were >200,000 mIU/L, consistent with invasive giant prolactinoma (IGP). He was treated with Cabergoline which eventually normalized the prolactin level and significantly reduced the size of IGP.
This is a rare case of obstructive hydrocephalus with super-imposed intra-pituitary hemorrhage secondary to IGP, highlighting the importance of a full hormonal assessment for proper diagnosis and management.
(IGP) invasive giant prolactinoma; obstructive hydrocephalus
Desmoid fibromatoses are benign, slow growing fibroblastic neoplasms, arising from musculoaponeurotic stromal elements. Desmoids are characterized by local invasion, with a high rate of local recurrence and a tendency to destroy adjacent structures and organs. Desmoid fibromatoses are rare in children, and though they may occur in the head and neck region, are extremely rare in the paranasal sinuses. Here we report a case of extraabdominal desmoid fibromatosis in a seven-year-old boy involving the sphenoid sinus, one of only six published reports of desmoid fibromatosis of the paranasal sinuses. The expansile soft tissue mass eroded the walls of the sphenoid sinus as well as the posterior ethmoid air cells extending cephalad through the base of the skull. We discuss the clinicopathologic features of this lesion, including structural and ultrastructural characteristics, and we review the literature regarding treatment and outcome.
Basaloid squamous cell carcinoma (BSCC) is a distinctive variant of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) with more aggressive behavior. It occurs preferentially in the upper aerodigestive tract. Sinonasal tract BSCC is uncommon, and only limited studies have been reported in literature. In these studies, most BSCCs arose from the nasal mucosa with or without extension to the paranasal sinuses. Rare reported cases of BSCC involved only the paranasal sinus. In this report, we present a case of a female patient with a sphenoid sinus mass. Clinically, the patient had progressively decreasing vision and headache. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computerized tomographic (CT) scan showed an infiltrating tumor mass involving the sphenoid sinus and the sella with compression of the optic nerve. Pathologic examination revealed an invasive basaloid epithelial neoplasm that was arranged in lobules, nests and cords. The tumor also showed palisading of peripheral cells, focal abrupt squamous differentiation and in situ carcinoma in the surface mucosa. In the immunohistochemical studies, this tumor revealed a strongly positive nuclear staining for p63. The morphologic and ancillary studies indicated a BSCC. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of sinonasal tract BSCC that mainly involved the sphenoid bone and sella. In this region, BSCC should be distinguished from benign and malignant neoplasms that more often affect sella and base of skull, such as pituitary adenoma with extensive necrosis, small cell neuroendocrine carcinoma (SCNC), olfactory neuroblastoma, malignant germ cell tumor, paranasal adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), and a variety of metastatic malignancies.
Basaloid squamous cell carcinoma; Sphenoid sinus; Sellar mass
Hemangiopericytoma (HPC) is a rare vascular tumor that can arise in any organ system, but occurs most frequently in skeletal muscle. We present a case of a primary sphenoid sinus HPC unusual for its spontaneous remission after biopsy. There have been approximately 55 cases of sinonasal HPC reported in the literature, representing less than 5% of all lesions. In general, HPC behaves aggressively, demonstrating greater than 50% local recurrence and 10% metastatic disease. Although extended surgical resection is traditionally considered the most effective therapy for all HPC, critical literature review does not support this method of treatment for HPC occurring in the paranasal sinuses and skull base. Long-term follow-up indicates that the majority of sinonasal HPC have a benign clinical course regardless of treatment. As a result, we do not recommend extended resection as the initial therapy for sinonasal HPC. Instead, a period of observation coupled with serial MRI or CT scans should be used to detect tumor progression. These indolent tumors should undergo extended resection only after progression has been confirmed. In addition to the case report, a synopsis of the reviewed literature and a summary of treatment recommendations are also presented.
The purpose of this case report is to familiarize the sinus surgeon with the possibility of the rapid development of internal carotid artery aneuryams from fungal infections of the sphenoid sinuses. A renal dialysis patient with progressive loss of vision was treated with high doses of steroids for the presumed diagnosis of temporal arteritis. Subsequent work-up included a magnetic resonance arteriogram (MRA) and computed tomography (CT) with contrast that failed to demonstrate aneurysmal changes of the carotid arteries but suggested the presence of a mycotic infection of the sphenoid sinuses. During a sphenoidotomy two days later, in addition to the anticipated aspergillus infection of the sinuses, an aneurysm extending from the left internal carotid artery into the sphenoid sinus was encountered. An emergency arteriogram immediately following the surgery revealed a second newly developed large mycotic aneurysm of the right internal carotid artery filling the right sphenoid sinus as well. This case report documents the rapidity with which mycotic aneurysms can develop from a sphenoid sinus infection secondary to aspergillosis in an immunocompromised host.
To clarify the anatomical correlations of the sphenoid sinus with surrounding structures in the normal Korean population, and to identify surgical landmarks for safe sellar floor dissection in the anterior skull base by endoscopy and microscopy.
We reviewed the 196 brain magnetic resonance imaging findings showing a normal appearance, and measured the distances between anatomical landmarks.
The mean distances from the base of the columella to the anterior wall of the sphenoid sinus and the sellar floor were 69.71±4.25 mm and 86.26±4.57 mm, respectively in the over 15 age group, and showed the smallest degree of variation among the measurements. The mean angles between the floor of the nasal cavity and the straight line connecting the base of the columella and the sellar floor were 29.45±3.25° and 24.75±4.00° in the over 15 and under 15 age groups, respectively. The mean values of both distances and angles increased with age until 15 years after which no further increases were evident. There were no significant differences in the measurements between males and females or among subjects with different degrees of pneumatization in the over 15 age group.
The distances from the base of the columella to the sellar floor and the anterior wall of the sphenoid sinus, which were consistent among individuals, could be used as a surgical indicator to investigate the sellar floor in endoscopic or microscopic transsphenoidal approaches.
Pituitary gland; Neuroendoscopy; Sphenoid sinus; Skull base neoplasm
Two sisters presented to our medical center with nontraumatic cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fistulas from left sphenoid sinocranial junction defects. One sister had recurrent meningitis over a 20-year period that prompted a skull base evaluation. Four years later, her younger sister presented with profuse CSF rhinorrhea. Transethmoid sphenoidotomy with sinus obliteration and lumbar-subarachnoid temporary CSF diversion successfully treated one sister, while the other required reoperation and permanent lumbar-peritoneal shunting. In both cases the skull base defect was identically located in the posterolateral left sphenoid sinus. Embryological considerations, evaluation and management are presented.
Sellar aspergillosis is a rare infection commonly mistaken for a pituitary tumour. We present a rare case of pituitary fossa Aspergillus fumigatus mycetoma in an immunocompetent 90-year-old female, who presented with headaches. Magnetic resonance imaging scans demonstrated an enhancing pituitary fossa mass that appeared to infiltrate the sphenoid sinus, suggestive of an invasive tumour. Stereotactic trans-sphenoidal resection confirmed localized A. fumigatus infection. The abscess was debrided and the dura was left intact. Her headaches resolved post-operatively and she was treated with voriconazole. This indicates that aspergilloma should be considered as a differential for an unexplained pituitary lesion even in elderly immunocompetent patients.
Pituitary adenomas represent the most frequently observed type of sellar masses; however, the presence of a rapidly growing sellar tumor, diabetes insipidus, ophthalmoplegia and headaches in an older patient strongly suggests metastasis to the pituitary. Since the anterior pituitary has a great reserve capacity, metastasis to the pituitary and pituitary involvement in lymphoma are usually asymptomatic. Whereas diabetes insipidus is the most frequent symptom, patients can present with headaches, ophthalmoplegia and bilateral hemianopsia.
A 70-year-old woman with no previous history of malignancy presented with headaches, right oculomotor nerve palsy and diabetes insipidus. As magnetic resonance imaging revealed a sellar mass involving the pituitary gland and infundibular stalk, which also extended into the right cavernous sinus and sphenoid sinus, the patient underwent an immediate transsphenoidal decompression surgery. Her prolactin was 102.4 ng/ml, whereas her gonadotropic hormone levels were low. A low level of urine osmolality after overnight water deprivation, along with normal plasma osmolality suggested diabetes insipidus. Histological examination revealed that the mass had been the infiltration of a high grade B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma involving respiratory system epithelial cells. Paranasal sinus computed tomography scanning and magnetic resonance imaging of the thorax and abdomen were performed. Since magnetic resonance imaging did not reveal any abnormality, after paranasal sinus computed tomography was performed, we concluded that the primary lymphoma originated from the sphenoid sinus and infiltrated the pituitary. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy to the sellar area were planned, but the patient died and her family did not permit an autopsy.
Lymphoma infiltration to the pituitary is difficult to differentiate from pituitary adenoma, meningioma and other sellar lesions. To plan the treatment of lymphoma infiltration of the pituitary gland, it must be differentiated from other sellar lesions.
Introduction: The trans-sphenoid access to the pituitary gland is becoming the most common approach for pituitary adenomas. Preoperative evaluation of the anatomy of the sphenoid sinus by computed tomography (CT) scan and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a routine procedure and can direct the surgical decision. Purpose: This work determines the incidence of the different anatomical variations of the sphenoid sinus as detected by MRI and CT scan and their impact on the approach. Methods: The CT scan and MRI of 296 patients operated for pituitary adenomas via a trans-sphenoid approach were retrospectively reviewed regarding the different anatomical variations of the sphenoid sinus: degree of pneumatization, sellar configuration, septation pattern, and the intercarotid distance. Results: There were 6 cases with conchal pneumatization, 62 patients with presellar, 162 patients with sellar, and 66 patients with postsellar pneumatization. There was sellar bulge in 232 patients, whereas this bulge was absent in 64 patients. There was no intersphenoid sinus septum in 32 patients, a single intersphenoid septum in 212 patients, and an accessory septum in 32 patients. Intraoperatively, the sellar bulge was marked in 189 cases and was mild in 43 cases. Discussion: The pattern of pneumatization of the sphenoid sinus significantly affects the safe access to the sella. A highly pneumatized sphenoid sinus may distort the anatomic configuration, so in these cases it is extremely important to be aware of the midline when opening the sella to avoid accidental injury to the carotid and optic nerves. The sellar bulge is considered one of the most important surgical landmarks, facilitating the access to the sella. The surgical position of the patient is also a crucial point to avoid superior or posterior misdirection with resultant complications. It is wise to use extreme caution while removing the terminal septum. Conclusion: Different anatomical configurations of the sphenoid sinus can seriously affect the access to the sella via the nose. The surgeon should be aware of these findings preoperatively to reach the sella safely and effectively.
Sphenoid sinus; pneumatization; pituitary adenoma; trans-sphenoid approach
A mucocele of a para-nasal sinus is an accumulation of mucoid secretion and desqua-mated epithelium within the sinus with distension of its walls and is regarded as a cyst like expansile and destructive lesion. If the cyst invades the adjacent orbit and continues to expand within the orbital cavity, the mass may mimic the behavior of many benign growths primary in the orbit. The frontal sinus is most commonly involved, whereas sphenoid, ethmoid, and maxillary mucoceles are rare. Floor of frontal sinus is shared with the superior orbital wall which explains the early displacement of orbit in enlarging frontal mucoceles. Frontal sinus mucoceles are prone to recurrences if not managed adequately. Here, we are evaluating different approaches used to manage various stages of frontal mucoceles which presented to us with orbital complications. Three cases of frontal sinus mucocele are discussed which presented to our OPD with different clinical symptoms and all cases were managed by different surgical approaches according to their severity. We also concluded that it is prudent to collaborate with the neurosurgeons for adequate management of such complex mucoceles by a craniotomy approach.
Biopore implant cranioplasty; endoscopic marsupilization; frontal mucocele; orbital complications
Neuroendocrine neoplasms are defined as epithelial neoplasms with predominant neuroendocrine differentiation. They can arise in almost every organ of the body although they are most commonly found in the gastrointestinal tract and respiratory system. Nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses are a rare site for neuroendocrine carcinoma. In contrast to the other regions, neuroendocrine tumours of the sinuses have been reported to be recurrent and locally destructive. Very few cases of paranasal sinus neuroendocrine carcinoma have been reported till date. Difficulty in pathologic diagnosis and rarity of this malignancy have hindered the progress in understanding the clinical course and improving outcomes. We herein report a case of poorly differentiated neuroendocrine tumour of ethmoid and sphenoid sinus with invasion of orbit and intracranial extension. The patient had complete response at the end of chemoradiation and he was disease-free for 9 months duration after which he developed bone metastasis without regional recurrence.
We present a case of a purely infrasellar craniopharyngioma that initially presented as a sphenoid sinus mass. Craniopharyngiomas are usually located within the sella. Purely infrasellar craniopharyngiomas have only rarely been reported in the literature. A 25-year-old woman presented with 6-month history of progressive headaches. Initial neuroimaging revealed the presence of a sphenoid sinus mass. Initially, she underwent an endoscopic biopsy of the mass by our ENT service. Pathology was consistent with craniopharyngioma and she was referred to neurosurgery for further surgical management. She then underwent an endoscopic transsphenoidal approach for complete resection of the purely extracranial, infrasellar craniopharyngioma. The Rathke pouch arises from the roof of the primitive mouth and grows toward the brain at the fourth week of gestation. Normally, it loses its attachment with the stomadeum completely by the eighth week of gestation. The craniopharyngeal canal (CPC) extends from the floor of the sella to the vomer and may rarely give rise to ectopic craniopharyngiomas. This case shows that such ectopic tumors may arise anywhere along the CPC. Endoscopic endonasal approach provides an excellent route for the resection of these tumors.
Craniopharyngioma; ectopic; Rathke pouch; infrasellar
Anatomic variations of the paranasal sinuses are very common. The paranasal sinus anatomy should be carefully examined prior to performing endoscopic sinus surgery in terms of both existent pathologies and anatomic variations. The anatomy of the paranasal sinuses and its variations have gained importance, along with advances in coronal paranasal sinus computed tomography and extensive use of endoscopic sinus surgery.
A 53-year-old Caucasian woman was admitted to our clinic with complaints of nasal breathing difficulties and headache persisting for a long time. Another concha bullosa was detected in the middle concha bullosa on preoperative paranasal computed tomography examination. It is known that the paranasal sinuses have a number of anatomical variations.
Herein we report a rare case, along with a review of the literature, to emphasize that a concha bullosa inside another concha bullosa should not be ignored.
Objectives: We present the first known case in the English-language literature of a myxoma arising in the sphenoid sinus. By describing the patient's clinical course and the salient features of this rare neoplasm, we seek to increase the awareness of the presentation, histological features, and treatment considerations for myxomas of the head and neck. In the process, we intend to describe the work-up of isolated sphenoid sinus lesions and focus on the varying and evolving techniques for surgical access to the sphenoid sinus.
Study Design and Methods: Case report and literature review.
Results: We describe the clinical course of a patient with a myxoma of the sphenoid sinus. The patient underwent an external sphenoethmoidectomy through a lateral rhinotomy approach with medial maxillectomy under MRI-guidance. He remains without evidence of recurrent disease after 8 months.
Conclusions: Myxomas of the head and neck are rare neoplasms. Their infiltrative nature and tendency to recur demand an aggressive surgical approach that may be accomplished with minimal morbidity using currently available image-guided techniques.
Myxoma; neoplasms; sphenoid sinus
A 32-year-old woman presented to the endocrinology clinic with recent onset galactorrhoea. Investigations revealed raised prolactin levels. An MRI scan demonstrated a normal pituitary gland, and an incidental finding of sphenoid sinusitis with expansion of the sphenoid sinus was thought to be due to a mucocele.
It is postulated that either the direct local pressure by the mucocele or localised inflammation secondary to sinusitis might cause hyperprolactinaemia. The patient underwent endoscopic surgery to drain the mucocele, after which her galactorrhoea resolved. A review of the literature reveals only one previously documented case of sinusitis causing hyperprolactinaemia and galactorrhoea.
Solitary involvement of the sphenoid sinus has rarely been reported in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Isolated oculomotor nerve palsy is uncommon as an initial presentation of malignant tumors of the sphenoid sinus.
A 53-year-old woman presented with a three-month history of headache and diplopia. Neurological examination revealed complete left oculomotor nerve palsy. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) demonstrated a homogenous soft-tissue lesion occupying the left sphenoid sinus and invading the left cavernous sinus. The patient underwent transsphenoidal biopsy and the lesion was histologically diagnosed as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, diffuse large B-cell type. Tumor cells were positive for CD20 and negative for CD3. Following six cycles of chemotherapy, the left oculomotor nerve palsy that had been previously observed was completely resolved. There was no enhancing lesion noted on follow-up MRI.
It is important to recognize that non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the sphenoid sinus can present with isolated oculomotor nerve palsy, although it is extremely rare. The cranial nerve deficits can resolve dramatically after chemotherapy.