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October 1985

Respiratory Obstruction Following the Nadbath Facial Nerve Block

Arch Ophthalmol. 1985;103(10):1454-1456. doi:10.1001/archopht.1985.01050100022003

To the Editor.  —We recently observed a serious and potentially life-threatening complication of the Nadbath facial nerve block: respiratory obstruction. To our knowledge, this has not been previously reported.

Report of a Case.  —A 75-year-old woman was seen for routine cataract extraction of the left eye under local anesthesia consisting of retrobulbar injection and Nadbath facial nerve block. Several weeks earlier, she had undergone the same anesthesia and surgery on her right eye. Her medical history was significant for left simple mastoidectomy to treat a severe middle ear infection when the patient was a teenager. Within the last several years, the patient had developed a "senile" tremor and an idiopathic voice disorder. She also had a postural tremor and a voice characterized by intermittent straining and stoppages. Neurologic examination had previously shown no explanation for her tremor or voice disorder, and prior examination by the patient's private otolaryngologist had revealed