New detailed description of the anterior part of the cribriform plate using anatomic specimens and computed tomography
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Ethmoidal slit (ES) and cribroethmoidal foramen (CF) have been poorly studied, without any radiological description. They may ease cribriform plate’s diseases. The objective was to describe the frequency, size, and computed tomography (CT) appearance of these foramina.
A two-part anatomoradiological study was performed: first on dry skulls using a surgical microscope and CT, second on patients CT scans. For each, foramina were searched for, described, and measured when possible.
Thirteen dry macerated skulls were studied. The orbitomeatal plane was relevant for studying ES. With microscope, ES and CF were identified in, respectively, 92% and 100% of cases. Using CT, all ES and CF were visible, with a mean length and width of, respectively, 3.9 ± 1.7 mm and 0.9 ± 0.3 mm for ES and 1.6 ± 1 mm and 0.9 ± 0.3 mm for CF. CT scans from 153 patients were reviewed. ES and CF were identified in, respectively, 80% and 91% of cases, with a mean length and width of, respectively, 3.9 ± 0.8 mm and 0.8 ± 0.2 mm for ES.
Large-sized ES was found frequently, and were clearly visible in patients CT scans. CF was markedly smaller, but seen in most patient scans. ES and CF could be areas of least resistance in the anterior part of the cribriform plate. CT might be helpful in understanding their pathological implications.
KeywordsCribriform plate Ethmoid bone Computed tomography Skull base Anatomy
Intraclass correlation coefficient
CE: protocol development, data collection and management, data analysis, and manuscript writing. L-MR: protocol development and data collection. MH: protocol development and manuscript editing. AK: protocol development. VP: protocol development and manuscript editing. MH: protocol development and manuscript editing.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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