Sphenoid Sinus in Relation to Age, Gender, and Cephalometric Indices

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Abstract

The sphenoid sinus is located in the center of the cranial base and is surrounded by numerous neurovascular structures. The aim of this study was to determine sphenoid sinus types and subtypes, dimensions of the sinus and cranium, and the relations of these to age and gender.

Computed tomography data was obtained from 144 patients to determine right sphenoidal volume (sphVOLR), left sphenoidal volume (sphVOLL), total sphenoidal volume (sphVOLT), anteroposterior length of the sphenoid sinus (sphAP), laterolateral length of the sphenoid sinus (sphLL), head circumference (crHC), fronto-occipital length (crFO), and biparietal length (crBP), with OSIRIX software. The patients’ ages ranged between 9 and 83 years (mean age 38 ± 15.5 years). The study included 89 males (mean age 39 ± 15.5 years) and 55 females (mean age 38 ± 15.6 years).

Conchal (1.4%), presellar (8.3%), sellar (23.6%), and postsellar (66.7%) type sphenoid sinuses were determined based on the extension of pneumatization around the sella turcica. Each type of sphenoid sinus was classified into the following 5 types based on the direction of pneumatization: body, full lateral, pterygoid, lesser wing, and greater wing subtypes. Mean sphAP was determined as 29.72 mm and mean sphLL as 37.73 mm. In 5 patients only (3.4%), the sphenoid sinus was not divided into right and left by the intersphenoidal septum.

The variations in the extensions of pneumatization of the sphenoid sinus and its dimensions might be used to estimate the selection of a surgical approach to lesions bordering the sinus.

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