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Italian Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery 2008 December;19(3):157-60


language: English

Post-traumatic pseudoaneurysm of the facial artery: diagnostic and therapeutic paths. A case report

Longobardi G. 1, Foresti M. 1, Piras A. 2, Garau V. 2

1 Division of Maxillo-Facial Surgery, SS. Trinità Hospital Cagliari, Italy 2 Odontoiatric Clinic, University of Cagliari, Italy


An aneurysm can be or seem true. This latter, also called pseudoaneurysm, is a hematoma that follows a traumatic event on the inner wall of a blood vessel. Post-traumatic pseudoaneurysm is a rare event in the cervico-facial region and facial artery is the most affected vessel, followed by the superficial temporal one. This case report concerns a Caucasian young man, 18-year old, presented with a growing submandibular swelling 30 days after a motorbike crash. Clinical inspection, together with ecography and arteriography, enabled us to make a diagnosis of pseudoaneurysm of the facial artery. Surgery was performed to resolve the case. A mass in the maxillo-facial region needs a differential diagnosis to understand the pathology. Case history, clinical examination and investigative tests are necessary. Thanks to its particular characteristics pseudoaneurysm can be distinguished from true aneurysm, arterial-venous fistula or other pathologies. Today therapy takes advantage of minimally invasive surgery techniques even if traditional surgical excision still represents the best therapeutic choice. A maxillo-facial trauma caused by a road accident can mask a growing pseudoaneurysm of the facial artery. A scrupulous clinical examination and sensitive investigative tests are useful to obtain a rapid diagnosis, that allows us to make a correct therapeutic choice to avoid dangerous complications.

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