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Taste deficits after middle ear surgery for otosclerosis: taste somatosensory interactions

, : Taste deficits after middle ear surgery for otosclerosis: taste somatosensory interactions. European Journal of Oral Sciences 116(5): 394-404

The aim of this study was to evaluate the postoperative consequences of chorda tympani reclining during middle ear surgery for otosclerosis. Electrogustometric taste thresholds were measured at 11 loci on the tongue and the soft palate in 14 patients before surgery, and 8 d, 1 month and (in some cases) 6 months after surgery. A significant increase in thresholds was observed on the ipsilateral side of the tongue after surgery. The extent of the deficit and the recovery time course depended on tongue locus. The tip of the tongue displayed a limited deficit, suggesting bilateral chorda tympani innervation. The edge of the tongue was less impaired than the dorsal or the lateral tip loci; it may be dually innervated by both chorda tympani and glossopharyngeal nerves in humans, as already shown in rats. Likewise for the fungiform papillae located just anterior to the circumvallate papillae. Somatosensory early complaints suggest a derepression of chorda tympani on lingual nerve signals. In a second stage, relief of complaints before electrogustometric threshold recovery suggested trigeminal compensation of the chorda tympani deficit. Relief of complaints seems to involve central integrative processes, whereas the evolution of electrogustometric threshold represents the actual recovery time course of chorda tympani peripheral sensitivity.


PMID: 18821980

DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0722.2008.00556.x

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