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Tympanomastoid suture and digastric muscle in cadaver and live parotidectomy.

Research paper by Robert L RL Witt, Gregory S GS Weinstein, Lidia K LK Rejto

Indexed on: 05 Apr '05Published on: 05 Apr '05Published in: The Laryngoscope



Abstract

To prove that the tympanomastoid suture (TMS) is a significantly closer and less variable anatomic landmark to the facial nerve than the posterior-superior margin of the posterior belly of the digastric muscle (PBD) in parotid surgery.A prospective study of 14 cadaver specimens and 22 live patients comparing the closest measured distances between the TMS and PBD to the facial nerve.The mean closest distances from the TMS and PBD to the facial nerve were 1.8 (range 0-4) mm and 12.4 (range 7-17) mm, respectively (P < .05) for cadavers. The mean closest distances in live patients from the TMS and PBD to the facial nerve were 2.0 (range 0-4) mm and 10.7 (range 5-14) mm, respectively (P < .05).Facial nerve identification and preservation is the key to successful parotid surgery. The TMS is a significantly closer and less variable anatomic landmark compared with the PBD both in cadaver dissection and in live patients.