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Radiology. 1985 Nov;157(2):413-7.

Infection and tumor of the masticator space: CT evaluation.


The masticator space is a distinct deep facial space, bounded by the superficial layer of deep cervical fascia and containing the four muscles of mastication and the ramus and posterior body of the mandible. Trismus often complicates evaluation of masticator space disease. However, computed tomography (CT) clearly delineates the normal and pathologic anatomy of this region. The CT appearance of the masticator space was demonstrated in a retrospective review of 32 patients with either infection or tumor involving this space. Masticator space infections were found to have characteristic CT appearances and patterns of spread. CT was especially useful in differentiating inflammation from frank abscess, detecting mandibular osteomyelitis, and directing surgical drainage to the precise deep-tissue space involved. In cases of tumor, the primary utility of CT was in defining tumor extent accurately and in helping to assess resectability and determine radiation therapy ports.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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