J Rhinol.  1997 May;4(1):68-70.

Lateral Sinus Thrombophlebitis Caused by Isolated Sphenoid Sinusitis

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Hallym University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Lateral sinus thrombophlebitis is a very rare complication of paranasal sinusitis. This disease can result in a fatal outcome if not treated with proper antibiotics or surgical intervention. Recently, the authors came across a case of lateral sinus thrombophlebitis resulting from cavernous sinus thrombophlebitis complicated by isolated sphenoid sinusitis. Because of a severe and persistent headache, the case was initially admitted and managed as though the patient was suffering from Tolosa-Hunt syndrome. Hemifacial hypoesthesia, periorbital swelling and meiosis on the right side developed during tentative treatment. High resolution computed tomography showed isolated sphenoid sinusitis with partial bony dehiscence on the roof of left sphenoid sinus. Magnetic resonance images showed multiple thrombosis in the cavernous sinus, internal carotid artery, sigmoid sinus and lateral sinus on the right side. Antibiotics, thrombolytics and endoscopic surgical intervention of sinusitis prevented a fatal outcome in spite of remaining hemifacial hypoesthesia and ptosis on the right side.


Lateral sinus thrombophlebitis; Cavernous sinus thrombophlebitis; Sphenoid sinusitis
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