Korean J Otolaryngol-Head Neck Surg.  1998 Apr;41(4):467-470.

Isolated Sphenoid Sinus Disease

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, College of Medicine, Sung Kyun Kwan University, Samsung Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. hjdhong@smc.samsung.co.kr


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Chronic paranasal sinusitis is a common disease and easily diagnosed by physical examination and its typical symptoms. However, isolated sphenoid sinusitis is very rare and may be misdiagnosed by an initial evaluation because it often shows long-standing, subtle symptoms and elusive physical findings. We aimed to characterize the typical clinical features of isolated sphenoid sinus disease. MATERIALS AND METHOD: Ten cases were selected from 6623 patients with sinusitis who had visited Samsung Medical Center ENT clinic from Sep. 1994 to Oct. 1997. Isolated sphenoid sinus disease was distinguished by computed tomography. Only those radiographic diagnoses to be confined exclusively to the sphenoid sinus were included in this study.
There were 10 cases of isolated sphenoid sinus disease. Nine were female and one was male. Of 10 cases, five cases were fungal origin, four were chronic sinusitis, and one was mucopyocele. Seven patients had headaches as their major symptom, and two had globus sensation.
The isolated sphenoid sinus disease requires the maintenance of a high index of suspicion in every patient who has vague or unusual headache, or globus sensation. We recommend a thorough endoscopic examination of sphenoethmoidal recess and clinical suspicion to rule out sphenoid sinusitis.


Isolated sphenoid sinusitis; Headache
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