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Palinacousis: an eloquent symptom of temporal lobe lesion
  1. Catherine Veilleux,
  2. Gilles El-Hage,
  3. Nathalie L'Ecuyer and
  4. Michel W Bojanowski
  1. Division of Neurosurgery, University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Professor Michel W Bojanowski, Division of Neurosurgery, University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada; michel.bojanowski.chum{at}


A 24-year-old woman was referred to us for an intracranial haemorrhage in the left temporal lobe caused by a ruptured cavernous malformation; the bleeding extended over the left Heschl’s gyrus and Wernicke area. On admission, the patient had global aphasia. A few days later, she spontaneously improved but remained with mild residual comprehensive dysphasia. She reported hearing, in her right ear, recently heard words, which is consistent with palinacousis. Auditory acuity testing was normal. EEG showed focal slowing in the left temporal region with no epileptiform activity. During awake surgery for resection of the cavernous malformation, stimulation of the superior temporal gyrus did not provoke palinacousis. The patient made good recovery with complete resolution of the aphasia and no recurrence of palinacousis. We aimed to review this phenomenon and to provide a systematic review of the current literature.

  • epilepsy and seizures
  • neuroimaging
  • neurootology
  • neurosurgery

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  • Contributors CV: took the lead in writing the manuscript, conducted review of current literature, prepared figures 1 and 2, conducted the interview for patient’s perspective. GE-H: contributed to video preparation, assumed critical revision of the manuscript for intellectual content. NL’E: contributed to conducting the interview for patient's perspective, assumed critical revision of the manuscript for intellectual content, gathered patient’s data for case report. MWB: original idea, assumed critical revision of the manuscript for intellectual content, lead neurosurgeon on the case.

  • 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.

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

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