Spontaneous bilateral and concurrent cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea: case presentation and literature review

T. Tikka, A. Opeodu, R. Irving, J. Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea is a rare entity. Only a few cases of spontaneous bilateral cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea have been reported. In all cases, there was a definite time interval between the two (left and right) presentations. Objectives: To raise awareness and report on the very rare entity of bilateral spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea. Case report: This paper reports the case of a bilateral, synchronous, spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea in a 44-year-old female. The patient had grommets surgically inserted on two separate occasions for treatment of otitis media with effusion, and received several courses of oral and topical antibiotics. Five years following the patient's initial presentation, a suspicion of concurrent bilateral cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea was raised. The otorrhoea sample collected proved to be cerebrospinal fluid. Cross-sectional imaging revealed bilateral defects in the tegmen tympani of the skull base. She underwent staged middle fossa craniotomies to repair the defects. Conclusion: Careful observation of the middle-ear fluid characteristics following myringotomy can allow for prompt diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)781-786
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Laryngology and Otology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016


  • cerebrospinal fluid
  • otorrhea
  • spontaneous
  • spontaneous bilateral cerebrospinal fluid otorrhoea
  • middle-ear fluid characteristics
  • antibiotic agent
  • ciprofloxacin
  • oxidized regenerated cellulose
  • steroid
  • tau protein
  • acute otitis media
  • adenoidectomy
  • auditory ossicle
  • bilateral hearing loss


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