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Case report
Frontal sinus cholesteatoma: a masquerading diagnosis
  1. Regi Kurien1,
  2. Leah Thomas1,
  3. Lalee Varghese1 and
  4. Bijesh Ravindran Nair2
  1. 1 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, India
  2. 2 Department of Neurosurgery, Christian Medical College, Vellore, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Regi Kurien; rkg233{at}


Cholesteatoma of the paranasal sinus is a very rare condition. As in the tympanomastoid region where cholesteatomas are a common entity, the paranasal sinus cholesteatomas also tend to erode the surrounding bony structures. Because of the extensive bony erosion, this condition often masquerades as a chronic granulomatous or a malignant lesion. Clinical presentation can be quite varied like facial deformities, visual and neurological deficits. Radiological findings are also non-specific making a preoperative diagnosis challenging. Histopathological examination is the only confirmatory investigation. We present a patient with frontal cholesteatoma who presented with forehead swelling of 1 month duration. Since the diagnosis could be obtained only intraoperatively, the patient required multiple surgeries. Frontal sinus cholesteatomas often require a combined endoscopic and external approach to ensure complete disease clearance. Periodic follow-up is essential to rule out recurrence.

  • otolaryngology / ENT
  • radiology
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  • Contributors RK: patient care, design, planning, reporting and review of the manuscript. LT: patient care, planning and writing of manuscript. LV and BRN: patient care, design, reporting and review of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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