Radiographic Course of Medically Managed Pediatric Orbital Subperiosteal Abscesses.

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DOI: 10.3928/01913913-20180802-02


PURPOSE: To describe the natural radiographic course of subperiosteal orbital abscesses that were managed medically in pediatric patients.

METHODS: A retrospective case review was undertaken at Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics of Kansas City, Missouri. All patients admitted to the hospital and diagnosed as having orbital cellulitis or subperiosteal abscess from 2008 to 2017 were included in the study. Of the 418 patients identified, 15 patients had repeat imaging and did not undergo surgery prior to the second scan. The initial size of the empyema, size of the empyema on repeat imaging, and clinical course were recorded for each patient.

RESULTS: The size of the empyemas increased 240% on average in the first 2 to 3 days. Imaging up to 11 days after the diagnosis showed that 9 cases persisted; meanwhile, 4 cases had radiographic resolution, with the earliest by 21 days. Two cases recurred months later. The largest increase in size was 500% over 3 days, but the initial empyema was only 0.3 cm3.

CONCLUSIONS: This review describes the natural history of radiographically reimaged subperiosteal empyema. Empyema size will increase for a few days prior to a gradual resolution in 1 to 3 weeks. An ultimate resolution of radiographic evidence of an empyema takes up to 21 days. This information will help guide clinical management and decision making in caring for patients with pediatric orbital cellulitis with subperiosteal empyema. [J Pediatr Ophthalmol Strabismus. 2018;55(6):387-392.].

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Journal of pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus





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MeSH Keywords

Abscess; Adolescent; Anti-Bacterial Agents; Child; Child, Preschool; Female; Follow-Up Studies; Hospitals, Pediatric; Humans; Infant; Male; Orbital Cellulitis; Retrospective Studies; Tomography, X-Ray Computed


Abscess; Adolescent; Anti-Bacterial Agents; Follow-Up Studies; Pediatric Hospitals; Orbital Cellulitis; Retrospective Studies; Tomography, X-Ray Computed

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