Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Aberrant internal carotid artery in the middle ear: the duplication variant


Vascular variants concerning the internal carotid artery (ICA) at the skull base level are rare. Correct workup and diagnosis in case of suspicion of such a variant are important as it mimics glomus tumours and could complicate myringotomy or middle ear surgery. We report a case of a 39-year-old woman presented with a 6-month history of right pulsatile tinnitus and aural fullness. Ear microscopy examination revealed a pale red pulsatile mass anterior to the umbo. Radiological assessment using CT and MRI/magnetic resonance angiography confirmed the diagnosis of an aberrant ICA. Interestingly, a duplication of the ICA was demonstrated, in which the enlarged inferior tympanic artery presented as the aberrant ICA, whereas a narrower collateral hypoplastic native ICA was also present. A conservative approach with regular follow-up appointments was recommended.

  • otolaryngology/ent
  • ear, nose and throat/otolaryngology

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.