Role of high resolution computed tomography of temporal bone in preoperative evaluation of chronic suppurative otitis media


  • M. D. Prakash Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  • Afshan Tarannum Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute, Bangalore, Karnataka, India



HRCT, Temporal bone, Cholesteatoma, Pre-operative evaluation, Sensitivity


Background: Chronic suppurative otitis media (CSOM) is a common condition seen in patients attending ENT department. The diagnosis of cholesteatoma is usually made on otologic examination. The necessity for HRCT imaging in an uncomplicated case is controversial. The objective was to evaluate preoperative HRCT temporal bone and to determine its’ usefulness in patients with Chronic suppurative otitis media (CSOM) undergoing surgery.

Methods: This study was a prospective study involving 30 cases of CSOM with cholestaetoma. All the patients underwent pre-operative HRCT screening followed by surgical exploration of middle ear cleft. Pre-operative CT scan and intra-operative findings recorded and compared.  

Results: Out of total 30 patients of CSOM, 16 (53%) were males and (90%) presented with chief complaints of otorrhoea. HRCT scan was found to be very sensitive (100%) in detecting cholesteatoma in middle ear cleft but differentiation between granulations or cholesteatoma wasn’t possible. HRCT satisfactorily delineated ossicular erosion except stapes suprastructure erosion which had 81.8% sensitivity and specificity 88.88%. For bony boundaries of middle ear, HRCT showed very high sensitivity and specificity for detecting scutum erosion, tegmen erosion, mastoid cortex erosion, jugular bulb dehiscence and bony external auditory canal erosion. It was moderately sensitive for LSCC Erosion (75%), Facial canal erosion (80%) and Sinus plate erosion (85.7%).

Conclusions: These results indicate that preoperative CT temporal bone scan of patients with CSOM serves as an important guide in surgical approach for otolaryngologists, although there are limitations in evaluation of the CT results.


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