SWEATING and flushing of the skin in the parotid region while eating is frequently seen in patients who have had abscesses or surgical procedures of the parotid gland. This symptom complex is commonly referred to as Frey's syndrome. It is the purpose of this paper to describe the anatomy and pathophysiology involved and the historical evolution of therapy in order to demonstrate the efficacy of a middle ear surgical procedure which eliminates the distressing symptoms of Frey's syndrome.
The earliest recorded case of Frey's syndrome is credited to the description of Duphénix in 1757 following incision and drainage of a parotid abscess. Baillarger in 1853 reported bilateral symptoms following bilateral suppurative parotitis which was not incised.1 Lucie Frey in 1923 reported a case produced by an infected bullet wound of the parotid gland, and she particularly noted that the resultant sweating corresponded to the cutaneous distribution of the
Blumenfeld RJ, Friedman JE. Intratympanic Surgical Treatment of Frey's Syndrome. Arch Otolaryngol. 1967;86(1):2–7. doi:10.1001/archotol.1967.00760050004002
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.