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Ann Maxillofac Surg. 2019 Jan-Jun;9(1):118-123. doi: 10.4103/ams.ams_251_18.

Acute Fascial Space Infections of the Neck: 1034 cases in 17 years follow up.

Author information

Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Dr. N D Desai Faculty of Medical Science and Research, Nadiad, Gujarat, India.
External Faculty, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Knowledge Institute of Physiotherapy, Anand, Gujarat, India.



The aim of this study was to provide insight about all the common fascial space infections of the neck, their presentation, their etiology, complaints, length of stay, and the treatment given.

Patients and Methods:

It was conducted in a tertiary center in Nadiad, Gujarat, India. A total of 1034 patients were treated for fascial space infections of the neck in the hospital from 2001 to 2017. There were 63.24% male and 36.75% female with age ranging from 21 days to 96 years having the mean age of 31.4 years.


Odontogenic infection with poor oral hygiene as a cause was found in most (78.43%) of the abscesses. Diabetes was the most common comorbid condition found in 98 (9.47%) patients along with HIV found in ten (0.96%) patients. Pain (99.41%), fever (86.07%), swelling (86.94%), and dysphagia/odynophagia (67.21%) were the most common presenting symptoms. Ludwig's angina and submandibular abscess were found to be the most common deep head-and-neck space infection making up for 52% cases. The most common group of microorganisms isolated were Streptococcus sp. (19.82%) and Staphylococcus aureus (18.66%).


Treatment was given in the form of incision and drainage of the abscesses (83.69%) and systemic antibiotics (100%). The most common space infection among the deep neck infections is the submandibular space infection (52%). If the etiological factor was not removed which mostly was carious teeth, high chances of recurrence were found (27.27%). Four patients required tracheostomy, and there was one mortality in the entire series.


Abscess; Ludwig's angina; cervical fascia; neck space infection; odontogenic infection

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