Volume 8, Issue 6, December 2020, Page: 197-203
A Review of Deep Neck Space Infections: Perspective from a Sub-Saharan African Center
Moses Ikechukwu Ajaero, Departments of ENT and Surgery, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Nigeria
Samuel Uchechukwu Nduagu, Departments of ENT and Surgery, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Nigeria
Chidiebere Peter Echieh, Departments of ENT and Surgery, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Nigeria; Department of Surgery, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
Raphael Arinze Onyekwelu, Departments of ENT and Surgery, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Nigeria
Received: Oct. 19, 2020;       Accepted: Oct. 28, 2020;       Published: Nov. 27, 2020
DOI: 10.11648/j.js.20200806.15      View  98      Downloads  32
Deep neck space infections (DNSI) are inflammation often with abscess collection within potential fascial spaces in the head and neck region. The incidence of DNSIs is relatively higher in populations of low socioeconomic status This study aimed at analyzing the pattern of presentation and management of DNSIs seen at our facility over 10 years. Data were extracted from patients’ case notes and medical records. A total of 72 patients (47 males and 25 females) were studied with a Male to Female ratio of 1.88:1. The patients’ ages ranged from 4years to 80 years with mean age of 46.2±21.3 years. the commonest presenting complaints were pain (95.8%), dysphagia (81.9%) and odynophagia (70.8%). The mean duration of complaints prior to presentation was 10.9±4.1days. Majority of the DNSIs were of odontogenic origin (56.9%) and diabetes mellitus (26.4%) was the most commonly encountered co-morbid condition. Submandibular and sublingual infections were the most common (40.3%) followed by peritonsillar space infections (23.6%) and retropharyngeal and prevertebral space infections (16.7%). S. aureus (15.3%) was the most commonly isolated organism among the rest with the infection being polymicrobial in 33.3% of the patients. The commonest complications were septicaemia (18.1%), necrotizing fasciitis (12.4%) and mediastinitis (2.8%). In Sub-Saharan Africa, DNSIs can affect all age groups; appear to have more morbidity in people with low socioeconomic class and co-morbidities. They can be managed with a combination of incision and drainage and intravenous antibiotics. Attention to oro-dental hygiene may help reduce the incidence of DNSI as majority are found to be linked with odontogenic and pharyngo-tonsillar conditions.
Deep Neck Space, Infection, Sub-Saharan Africa
To cite this article
Moses Ikechukwu Ajaero, Samuel Uchechukwu Nduagu, Chidiebere Peter Echieh, Raphael Arinze Onyekwelu, A Review of Deep Neck Space Infections: Perspective from a Sub-Saharan African Center, Journal of Surgery. Vol. 8, No. 6, 2020, pp. 197-203. doi: 10.11648/j.js.20200806.15
Copyright © 2020 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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