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Encephalomalacia in the Frontal Lobe: Complication of the Endoscopic Sinus Surgery

Karaman, Emin MD*; Isildak, Huseyin MD*; Yilmaz, Mehmet MD*; Enver, Ozgun MD*; Albayram, Sait MD

doi: 10.1097/SCS.0b013e318231e511
Brief Clinical Studies

Encephalomalacia is the softening or loss of brain tissue after cerebral infarction, cerebral ischemia, infection, craniocerebral trauma, or other injury. The term is usually used during gross pathologic inspection to describe blurred cortical margins and decreased consistency of brain tissue after infarction. Multicystic encephalomalacia refers to the formation of multiple cystic cavities of various sizes in the cerebral cortex of neonates and infants after injury, most notably perinatal hypoxic-ischemic events.

Chronic sinusitis has become one of the most common diseases in otolaryngology practice. Many of these patients can be managed successfully with medical therapy. Those who fail intensive medical therapy may be candidates for functional endoscopic sinus surgery (ESS). This procedure has variable complication rates and can have some serious consequences. Serious complications of functional ESS are very rare, but cerebrospinal fluid leak, meningitis, hemorrhage, infection, or vision loss has been reported in a few cases.

In this study, we present a 57-year-old man with encephalomalacia after a penetrating brain injury incurred during ESS.

From the *Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Cerrahpasa Medical School and †Department of Radiology, Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty, Istanbul University, Istanbul, Turkey.

Received October 19, 2010.

Accepted for publication January 29, 2011.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. Mehmet Yilmaz, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty, Istanbul University, Istanbul 34094, Turkey; E-mail:

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

© 2011 Mutaz B. Habal, MD