JOURNAL ARTICLE
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[Exploratory tympanotomy for suspected traumatic perilymphatic fistula].

UNLABELLED: Firstly reported after stapedectomy, perilymph fistula (PLF), may occur due to trauma.

AIM: Preoperative symptoms and therapeutic results are described and analyzed after exploratory tympanotomy for traumatic PLF.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Traumatic PLF was investigated in 90 patients (97 examinations) by exploratory tympanotomy at the Nantes University Hospital from 1995 to 1999. Preoperative symptoms were recorded and compared to results of tympanotomy to determine their diagnostic value. Similarly post-operative recovery was compared to results of tympanotomy.

RESULTS: This study showed the value of two symptoms: aural fullness and balance disturbance. During each surgical procedure, systematic grafting was performed even if fistulization was unapparent. The best results were achieved for vestibular symptoms and concerned more vertigo than auditory symptoms. There was no significant difference in postoperative symptoms, between patients with a leak and patients without a leak.

CONCLUSION: This demonstrates that the oval and round window should be grafted with connective tissue when an exploratory tympanotomy is performed.

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