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Beware of covert enemies: Candida orthopsilosis malignant otitis externa with base of the skull osteomyelitis, a case report and review of literature

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submitted on 2023-10-31, 06:46 and posted on 2023-10-31, 08:51 authored by Junais Koleri, Ahmad Al Bishawi, Israa' Al-Sheikh, Salman Qureshi, Muna AlMaslamani, Hamad Abdelhadi

Background

Malignant otitis externa (MOE) is a serious infection of the external auditory canal that is frequently associated with skull base osteomyelitis (SBO) as well as secondary neurological sequelae. Patients with poorly controlled diabetes mellitus or immunosuppression are at increased risk of developing such critical infection for multiple local and systemic factors. While most cases are secondary to bacterial infections particularlyPseudomonas aeruginosa, fungal infections are also occasionally encountered, often associated with delayed diagnosis and high morbidity and mortality.

Case report

We report a case of a 63 years old man with uncontrolled diabetes mellitus who presented with symptoms and signs of MOE, supported by radiological assessments. The patient was treated presumptively with a prolonged course of antibiotics without clinical improvement, coupled with progression of radiological findings and significant disease extension. Reassessment with biopsies and tissue cultures from external auditory meatus, tempo-mandibular bone, as well as base of the skull grew Candida orthopsilosis. The patient received induction treatment with high dose liposomal amphotericin followed by fluconazole to control disease progression and complications.

Conclusion

Candida MOE with secondary skull base osteomyelitis is rare and difficult to diagnose with no clear guidance on assessment and management. Clinicians should be aware of the unusual presentations where microbiological and histopathological evaluations are essential for proper management.

Other Information

Published in: IDCases
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
See article on publisher's website: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.idcr.2021.e01163

Funding

Open Access funding provided by the Qatar National Library

History

Language

  • English

Publisher

Elsevier

Publication Year

  • 2021

License statement

This Item is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Institution affiliated with

  • Hamad Medical Corporation
  • Communicable Disease Center - HMC

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