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Eagle Syndrome: an underdiagnosed cause of orofacial pain
  1. João Ferreira de Barros,
  2. Maria Vieira Rodrigues,
  3. Leonor Aurélio Barroso and
  4. Isabel Cruz Amado
  1. Department of Maxillofacial Surgery, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário de Coimbra, EPE, Coimbra, Portugal
  1. Correspondence to Dr João Ferreira de Barros; jmfbarros{at}


Eagle Syndrome (ES), also termed stylohyoid syndrome or styloid syndrome, is a rare condition characterised by a cluster of symptoms related to an elongation of the styloid process (SP) of the temporal bone. These may range from mild pharyngeal foreign body sensation and dysphagia to severe orofacial pain. High clinical suspicion is necessary owing to the unspecific clinical picture and limited diagnostic clues. Until a definitive diagnosis is achieved, these patients may develop symptoms which significantly impact their quality of life. The aim of this article is to report a case of ES in which a considerable length of SP was documented. Diagnosis was made years after the initial complaints and several medical workups by different specialties. Surgical resection of the elongated process by cervical approach was the adopted treatment modality. Patient recovery and follow-up was satisfactory, with remission of the afflicting symptoms.

  • head and neck surgery
  • pain
  • oral and maxillofacial surgery

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  • Contributors LAB was the main surgeon performing the described surgical procedure, and encouraged JFdB and MVR to investigate specific aspects of this entity. The manuscript was written by JFdB and MVR with input of all the authors. LAB and ICA supervised the findings of this work and consulted on the theoretical framework. All authors discussed the results and contributed to the final 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.