Labyrinthitis ossificans

Case contributed by Dr Bruno Costa Gomes


25 year old male presenting with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss after a meningococcal meningitis at 6 years of age.

Patient Data

Age: 25 years
Gender: Male

CT Temporal Bones

CT scan shows significant reduction of the permeability of both lateral semicircular canals and also of the superior and posterior left semicircular canals.

This represents osseous deposition within the fluid spaces of the membranous labyrinth.

There is no evident involvement of the vestibule or of the cochlea.


MR study reveals the absence of the normal T2 high signal of the fluid spaces of the membranous labyrinth in the lateral semicircular canals and the left superior semicircular canal. There is also a similar appearance in most of the left posterior semicircular canal.

These findings are in accordance to the previous CT scan.

Case Discussion

Labyrinthine ossificans occurs as the result of a healing reaction, and generally occurs secondary to an inflammatory process such as infection (as is the case here), but may be the result of traumatic or tumorous processes. This process leads to a sensorineural hearing loss and may prevent or complicate cochlear implantation

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Case information

rID: 21732
Published: 14th Feb 2013
Last edited: 5th Nov 2020
System: Head & Neck
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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