Briefly, in Feb 2013, the child developed headaches and a droopy eyelid. Surgeons ultimately had to remove his left skull due to brain swelling and concern the bone itself was infected. Over the next few months, the child had to wear a bike helmet to protect his brain which was no longer protected by his skull. A few weeks ago, he underwent another surgery to cover the hole in his left skull with a custom-shaped ceramic plate.
No mention was made in the media about which sinus cavity led to this horrible problem.
But here's a guess without benefit of more information...
Based on the skull defect shown (see pics here), it appears that the parietal and temporal skull bones were removed. There are actually no sinus cavities in these regions. As such, the only thing that makes sense to me is that the left cerebral dural sinus (large blood vessels of the brain) became clotted off and infected secondary to a sinus infection, probably the ethmoid sinus cavities located between the eyes.
The blood supply from the ethmoid sinus cavities communicates with the cavernous sinus found at the bottom of the brain. This anatomic structure is a major source of venous drainage of the brain.
If the cavernous sinus gets inflamed/infected due to a sinus infection, it could lead to multiple facial abnormalities due to injury of the numerous cranial nerves that go through it including:
• Inability to move the eyeballs (CN3, 4, 6)
• Numbness, pain of the skin over the forehead and cheeks (CNV1, V2)
• Loss of pupillary constriction (CN3)
• Visual loss/changes (CN1)
Ultimately, the cavernous sinus could also become thrombosed.
|Cavernous Sinus shown by red arrow. Taken from Sonoworld.|
From there, the infection can spread to the rest of the brain via the dural sinus cavities and potentially can even lead to death if not treated promptly and aggressively.