✓ Tophaceous pseudogout is one of the rarest forms of crystal deposition disease, typically presenting as a destructive and invasive mass involving the temporomandibular joint or the infratemporal fossa region in the absence of any other articular manifestations. Previous cases have been assumed to be caused by calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate (CPPD) crystal deposition, based on finding weakly birefringent crystals in the involved tissues. The authors present the unique case of a 65-year-old woman with a destructive and invasive facial mass extending to the middle cranial fossa with microscopic and clinical features consistent with tophaceous pseudogout. High-resolution x-ray crystallographic powder diffraction and Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy subsequently revealed that the crystals were composed of calcium hydroxyapatite without CPPD. The patient was later found to have primary hyperparathyroidism and mild hypercalcemia. This case demonstrates that tissue deposits of calcium hydroxyapatite can cause a destructive and invasive mass containing weakly birefringent crystals and raises the question of whether previous cases attributed to tophaceous pseudogout resulting from CPPD actually were composed of birefringent calcium hydroxyapatite.
Case report and review of the literature
Gerald A. Grant, Mark H. Wener, Hadi Yaziji, Neal Futran, Mary P. Bronner, Neil Mandel, and Marc R. Mayberg
Gerald A. Grant, Robert R. Rostomily, D. Kyle Kim, Marc R. Mayberg, Donald Farrell, Anthony Avellino, Larry G. Duckert, George A. Gates, and H. Richard Winn
Object. In this study the authors investigate delayed facial palsy (DFP), which is an underreported phenomenon after surgery for vestibular schwannoma (VS). The authors identified 15 (4.8%) patients from a consecutive series of 314 who underwent surgery for VS between 1988 and 2000, and in whom DFP developed. Delayed facial palsy was defined as a deterioration of facial nerve function from House—Brackmann Grades 1 or 2 more than 3 days postoperatively.
Methods. All patients underwent intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring of facial nerve function. The average latency of DFP was 10.9 days (range 4–30 days). In six patients (40%) minor deterioration (≤ two House—Brackmann grades) had occurred at a mean of 10.2 days postsurgery, whereas in nine patients (60%) moderate deterioration (≥ three House—Brackmann grades) had occurred at a mean of 11.8 days postoperatively. Five (33%) of 15 patients recovered to Grade 1 of 2 function within 6 weeks of DFP onset. Of the 15 patients with DFP, 14 had completed 1 year of follow up at the time of this study. Twelve (80%) of these 15 patients recovered to Grade 1 or 2 function within 3 months, and 13 (93%) of 14 patients recovered within 1 year. In all cases, stimulation of the seventh cranial nerve on completion of tumor resection revealed the nerve to be intact, both anatomically and functionally, to proximal and distal stimulation at 0.1 mA. A smaller tumor diameter correlated with greater recovery of facial nerve function. There was no correlation between the latency or severity of or recovery from DFP, and the patient's age or sex, the surgical approach, frequency of neurotonic seventh nerve discharges, anatomical relationship of the facial nerve to the tumor, patient's history of tobacco use, or cardiovascular disease.
Conclusions. It appears that DFP is an uncommon consequence of surgery for VS. Although excellent recovery of facial nerve function to its original postoperative status nearly always occurs after DFP, the magnitude and time course of the disorder were not predictors for subsequent recovery of facial nerve function.