Lateral dural sinus thrombosis in childhood

David Holzmann, Thierry A G M Huisman, Thomas E. Linder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Objectives: To present etiology, diagnosis, and treatment of dural sinus thrombosis (DST) in children. To discuss the diagnostic role of contrast- enhanced computed tomography (CECT) and to evaluate the controversial treatment modalities of anticoagulation, surgical drainage of the infected sinus, and ligation of the internal jugular vein (IJV). Study Design: Retrospective chart review and analysis of computed tomography (CT) scans and follow-up visits to document the clinical outcome. Methods: Between 1986 and 1996, CT scans of 15 children revealed DST. These patients were further investigated. Results: The etiology could be divided in three groups: group A, infection (6); group B, trauma (6); and group C, coagulation disorders. There were neither symptoms nor clinical findings specifically related to DST but rather, these were related to the underlying disease or condition (otitis media, skull base fractures). Diagnosis was made by CECT in all cases. Fusobacterium necrophorum was found in 4 of 6 patients in group A. Early mastoidectomy with incision and drainage of the thrombosed sigmoid sinus was performed in patients in group A. Postoperative intravenous (IV) heparin was given; however, no ligation of the IJV became necessary. In all patients in group C, protein C or protein S deficiency, or both, was detected. Conclusions: CECT with adequate window-level settings allows the diagnosis of a DST with high sensitivity. Treatment of choice for septic DST consists of administration of antibiotics and early surgical drainage. We recommend anticoagulation therapy in children with septic DST during their hospitalization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)645-651
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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