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February 1989

The Use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Conjunction With High-Resolution Computed Tomographic Scans for the Evaluation of Patients With Facial Paralysis

Author Affiliations

Ann Arbor, Mich

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1989;115(2):139. doi:10.1001/archotol.1989.01860260013001

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At the spring meeting of the American Neurotology Society, Palm Beach, Fla, Mitchell K. Schwaber, MD, and collaborators, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn, presented their experience with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) evaluation of patients with facial paralysis. Although high-resolution computed tomographic scans have been considered the radiologic test of choice for evaluation of the facial nerve, their evaluation of patients with Bell's palsy using MRI detected signal intensity changes within the facial nerve. While the meaning of these signal intensity changes is unclear and they represent occult neoplasm, it is felt that this most likely represents inflammation. Schwaber and colleagues have continued to use MRI in conjunction with high-resolution computed tomographic scans in a protocol that utilizes a strength of each individual test. The MRI has particular strengths of evaluating bone–soft-tisue interfaces, structures within the internal auditory canal, and the extratem poral segment of the facial nerve.

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