visual aid: mastoiditis

10 Jun

Not usually the focus of most of our head CT’s, but worth remembering what to look for, particularly for those with ear symptoms, and certainly if they have mastoid tenderness



rare complication of otitis media

more common in kids than adults

mastoid lies superior to the middle ear cavity

can have redness, swelling, tenderness over the mastoid process

pus entering mastoid cells under pressure -> dissolution of surrounding bone (not awesome)

infection can spread to nearby structures (e.g. neck, CNS)

treatment: IV abx



(opacification of mastoid air cells–tip: use bone windows)




File it away in the mental Rolodex.


References:; mastoid process; picture 1; picture 2


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