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Superior orbital fissure syndrome after deep lateral orbital wall decompression in Graves' ophthalmopathy.

Orbit 2024 March 12
PURPOSE: The superior orbital fissure contains cranial nerves III, IV, VI, and V1 with their three branches: frontal, lacrimal, and nasociliary. Superior orbital fissure syndrome (SOFS) is rare and can occur as a result of compression of these nerves due to trauma, bleeding, or inflammation in the retrobulbar space, but no cases of SOFS after deep lateral orbital wall decompression (DLOWD) have been reported. The aim of this paper is to describe this pathology, its possible causes, management, and outcome.

METHODS: Retrospective study of 575 DLOWD in patients with disfiguring exophthalmos due to Graves' ophthalmopathy performed in our hospital between 2010 and 2023. Three cases of postoperative SOFS were identified based on clinical presentation, history, physical examination, and radiological study. All patients were observed for a minimum of 12 months.

RESULTS: SOFS was diagnosed with the presence of ophthalmoplegia, ptosis, fixed and dilated pupils, hypo/anesthesia of the upper eyelid and forehead, loss of corneal reflex, and no loss of vision after DLOWD. Fractures, edema, and hemorrhages were excluded. They were treated with high-dose intravenous steroids and the patients recovered completely.

CONCLUSIONS: DLOWD challenges orbital surgeons because it requires removing bones near the globe or neurovascular structures. SOFS may occur due to the proximity and increased pressure on these structures.

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