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An unusual case of facial nerve palsy following soccer related minor head injury
  1. E F Leitch1,
  2. J R Hanson2
  1. 1General Surgery, Stobhill Hospital, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
  2. 2Broadford Hospital, Skye, Scotland, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr Hanson
 Broadford Hospital, Skye, Scotland, UK; jonathanhanson{at}


A 16 year old amateur soccer player sustained a minor head injury while contesting a ball in the air. He was unconscious for two minutes and remained “dizzy” for about an hour. After two days he developed a profound left lower motor neurone facial nerve palsy. He was found to have a complex fracture of the left petrous temporal bone, with fluid in the left middle ear and left mastoid. Treatment was conservative with oral steroids and oral co-amoxiclav and a left myringotomy to decompress his middle ear. The spectrum of aetiology, presentation, and prognosis for facial nerve injuries is discussed.

  • haemotympanum
  • delayed palsy
  • steroids
  • facial nerve palsy
  • head injury

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  • Competing interests: none declared

  • Figure 1 is reproduced with the patient’s permission.

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