Simulated aggressive skull base erosion in response to benign sinonasal disease

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Benign sinonasal masses and slow-growing neoplasms tend to remodel the nasal vault and facial bones, and this is particularly true of nasal polyps and inverted papillomas. However, when such benign masses press against the floor of the anterior cranial fossa and the walls of the sphenoid sinuses, simulated aggressive bone destruction rather than bone remodeling usually occurs. This type of bone destruction implies to the radiologist that a carcinoma may also be present, and this information could dissuade a surgeon from operating with an attempt at cure. In fact, about 90% of the time with inverted papillomas and in virtually all cases of nasal polyposis, no carcinoma is present. The computed tomographic (CT) scans and magnetic resonance images of 14 patients are used to demonstrate these changes. In addition, the CT scans of three patients with malignancies are shown to illustrate the similarity in the bony skull base changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)755-759
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1991


  • Nose, neoplasms
  • Papilloma
  • Skull, CT
  • Skull, MR studies
  • Skull, diseases


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