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Septic thrombophlebitis of the sigmoid sinus remains, as it has been for many years, one of the most intriguing complications of suppurative otitis media. Instances of this condition comprise but a small portion of the relatively large number of cases of suppurative otitis media associated with sepsis. The term as used signifies an infected clot, mural or occluding, from which particles gain entrance into the blood stream and produce septicemia. True septicopyemia with a positive blood culture and metastatic abscesses is not found in every case. The broader term "sepsis" is usually applied, indicating the condition of a patient who is acutely ill of an infection and who presents chills, intermittent high fever giving the "picket fence temperature curve," leukocytosis and secondary anemia.
Having ruled out possible extra-aural causes of sepsis, one must bear in mind the fact that infecting organisms in the middle ear and mastoid may gain entrance
MAXWELL JH. THROMBOSIS OF THE SIGMOID SINUSA CLINICAL ANALYSIS. Arch Otolaryngol. 1937;25(2):184–189. doi:10.1001/archotol.1937.00650010206006