Infections about the region of the face have long been treated with great respect and special care because of the constant threat of involvement of the cavernous sinus and the almost invariably fatal outcome of this complication.
As late as 1936, Grove,1 in reviewing this subject, reported a mortality of almost 100 per cent. As to the occasional reports of recovery, the accuracy of the diagnosis in many has been questioned, orbital cellulitis, especially, being at times a problematic possibility in differential diagnosis.
In his monograph on thrombophlebitis of the cavernous sinus, Eagleton2 listed certain criteria for establishing the diagnosis, namely:
A known site of infection.
An infection of the blood stream.
Early signs of venous obstruction.
Involvement of nerves in the sinus.
A neighborhood abscess of the soft parts.
Symptoms of complicating disease.
The concept of cavernous sinus thrombosis as contrasted with cavernous sinus thrombophlebitis has been stressed by many authors.3 In both
WELTY RF. BACTERIAL THROMBOPHLEBITIS OF A CAVERNOUS SINUS WITH RECOVERY. Arch Otolaryngol. 1946;43(1):70–72. doi:10.1001/archotol.1946.00680050080013
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.