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March 1962

Cerebrospinal Otorrhea

Arch Otolaryngol. 1962;75(3):208-212. doi:10.1001/archotol.1962.00740040216006

Cerebrospinal fluid otorrhea is an uncommon finding of the clinician. The escape of cerebrospinal fluid from the ear signifies a defect of the temporal bone and of the adjacent dura.17,29 Cases of head injury in which a clear watery fluid escaped from the ear were reported as early as 1727 by Stalparlius Vander Weil, many years before the discovery of cerebrospinal fluid.22 This paper includes a brief review of the world literature, a discussion of the etiology, complications, and surgical repair, and presentation of a case of cerebrospinal otorrhea.

Cause  Fracture of the temporal bone constitutes the most common cause of cerebrospinal fluid otorrhea; these fractures can be longitudinal, transverse, or a combination of both and either unilateral or bilateral.12 Longitudinal fractures, parallel to the long axis of the petrous pyramid, are most common and usually involve the floor of the middle cranial fossa, sparing the capsule

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