Sixteen temporal bones from 8 infants with otitis media, who died of meningitis, and 6 controls from infants with only otitis media, were studied histologically. All bones contained middle ear effusion and residual mesenchyme, but, unlike the controls, the meningitic cases showed considerable histopathological tissue changes of chronic and acute otitis media and chronic inflammatory cells in the round window membrane and within the perilymph, the modiolus, and the cochlear aqueduct, suggesting the latter as likely portals from the inner ear to the meninges. Since all tympanic membranes were intact and 3 were histologically normal, this silent route of infection warrants medical vigilance.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|State||Published - Dec 1994|