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Rev Stomatol Chir Maxillofac. 2010 Feb;111(1):32-5. doi: 10.1016/j.stomax.2009.01.009. Epub 2010 Jan 12.

[Palatal necrosis due to cocaine abuse].

[Article in French]

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Service de chirurgie maxillofaciale, hôpital Roger-Salengro, rue Emile-Laine, 59037 Lille cedex, France. <>


The easier access to cocaine allows chronic and intensive consumption. Nasally inhaled cocaine causes important midfacial lesions called: Cocaine Induced Midline Destructive Lesions. These lesions are due to several factors, the anesthetic, vasoconstrictive, locally prothrombotic properties of cocaine and its components combined with cytotoxic effects and traumatic nasal injuries related to consumption mode. Functional signs are: nasal regurgitation, rhinolalia, rhinorrhea, and midfacial pain. The morphological modifications of the nasal pyramid feature the destruction of bone and cartilage structures. Endo-buccal examination, anterior rhinoscopy, and TDM reveal palatine necrosis of variable extension. Nasal fossae superinfection is always present. Sinus superinfection is frequent. Management is multidisciplinary. Weaning must be achieved before surgery. It is necessary to rehabilitate speech and swallowing functions by the means of various local or free flaps.

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