Hyrtl’s fissure

Hyrtl's fissure (also known as tympanomeningeal fissure) is a congenital infralabyrinthic fissure. It is a very rare cause of spontaneous CSF ottorhoea and meningitis.

Development

This fissure is present in the developing fetal petrous temporal bone and is typically ossified by 24 weeks.

Radiographic features

CT
  • this can be diagnosed on axial slices and coronal reformations
  • CT cisternography and radionuclide cisternography can diagnose this rare condition
MRI
  • heavily T2 weighted images are helpful

Treatment

Once the diagnosis is established, attempts to surgically close the fissure can be planned.

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Article information

rID: 25517
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Hyrtl’s fissures
  • Hyrtl fissure

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