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Superficial temporal artery pseudoaneurysm following facial trauma


A 68-year-old man presented with rapid swelling of the right forehead 11 days after sustaining a laceration secondary to a fall. Presumed to be an abscess due to retained foreign body, needle aspiration was performed and arterial blood obtained. Doppler ultrasound revealed a 3 cm mixed echogenicity lesion with ‘see-sawing’ internal Doppler flow arising from the superficial temporal artery (STA), in keeping with a pseudoaneurysm. Treatment options including interventional radiology and open surgery were considered. Open operative intervention with direct surgical ligation provided an excellent outcome. Delayed pseudoaneurysm of the STA is a rare complication of trauma but should be considered in the differential of a traumatic lateral forehead swelling to prevent complications and inappropriate investigations and management.

  • plastic and reconstructive surgery
  • oral and maxillofacial surgery
  • radiology
  • interventional radiology
  • trauma

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