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Preauricular Abscess

Reviewed 06/2018
 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

  • Acute abscess of a preexisting preauricular sinus

  • Preauricular sinus

    • First described by Van Heusinger in 1864

    • One of the most common congenital abnormalities of the head and neck region

    • ...

DIAGNOSIS

HISTORY

  • Persistent preauricular ear pain

  • Redness in preauricular location

  • Fever (rare)

PHYSICAL EXAM

  • Erythema and induration in preauricular region

  • Possible fluid drainage from opening

  • Tenderness o...

TREATMENT

GENERAL MEASURES

If an abscess is present, empiric antibiotics with efficacy against the most common organisms infecting this site may be considered. Needle drainage for small abscesses shoul...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

1 week follow-up after initial presentation. Review cultures and sensitivities if applicable. 

DIET

No dietary restrictions needed 

PATIENT EDUCATION

Prevent recurren...

REFERENCES

1
Gan EC, Anicete R, Tan HK, et al. Preauricular sinuses in the pediatric population: techniques and recurrence rates. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol.  2013;77(3):372–378. [View Abstrac...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • Baatenburg de Jong RJ. A new surgical technique for treatment of preauricular sinus. Surgery.  2005;137(5):567–570.

  • Bellini C, Piaggio G, Massocco D, et al. Branchio-oto-renal s...

CODES

ICD10

  • Q18.1 Preauricular sinus and cyst

  • L02.811 Cutaneous abscess of head [any part, except face]

ICD9

  • 744.46 Preauricular sinus or fistula

  • 682.8 Cellulitis and abscess of other specified sites

SNOMED

  • ...

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Can be easily misdiagnosed as an infected sebaceous cyst

  • Mainstay of treatment is oral antibiotic therapy and possible needle drainage.

  • Incision and drainage should be reserved for compl...

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