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Osteoradionecrosis of the hyoid bone – a novel application of the Sonopet ultrasonic aspirator


A 66-year-old man with a history of squamous cell carcinoma of the right tonsil presented to the emergency department with two life-threatening episodes of haemoptysis 9 months after completion of chemoradiation. He was evaluated to rule out recurrent malignancy, and was determined to have osteoradionecrosis of his hyoid bone that had led to an oropharyngeal fistula. Given the proximity to branches of the external carotid, he was offered tracheostomy and resection of the protruding necrotic bone with ultrasonic bone aspirator, which was placed down the shaft of the laryngoscope to minimise damage to adjacent structures. He tolerated the procedure well with complete resolution of exposed bone on follow-up laryngoscopy.

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