Squamous cell carcinoma of the mastoid – a report of two cases

  • OA Lasisi University of Ibadan, PO Box 22040, Ibadan, Nigeria
  • AO Ogunleye
  • EEU Akang


Malignant tumours of the mastoid are rare, the majority being squamous cell carcinomas. We report two cases whose clinical presentation mimicked mastoid abscess with intracranial complications. The first case is a twenty year Nigerian lady who presented to the Emergency Room of the Otorhinolaryngology Department with a one month history of headache, low grade fever, left facial palsy, neck stiffness and left post-auricular swelling on a background of left chronic suppurative otitis media since childhood. An initial diagnosis of meningitis and mastoid abscess secondary to chronic suppurative otitis media was made but histology of the mastoid specimen revealed keratinizing squamous cell carcinoma, which was treated with palliative primary radiotherapy. The second case is a 45-year old man with a chronic mastoiditis and mastoid abscess that was later found to be suamous cell carcinoma of the mastoid and was managed with combination of surgery and radiotherapy. The report highlights advanced stage of the disease at presentation, and discusses the etiology and management. To the best of our knowledge, these are the first cases of this entity to be documented in Africans.

Keywords: squamous cell carcinoma, middle ear, mastoid, abscess

Ghana Medical Journal Vol. 39(1) 2005: 28-32

Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 0016-9560