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Epitympanic recess

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Title: Epitympanic recess  
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Subject: Aditus to mastoid antrum
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Epitympanic recess

Epitympanic recess
The right membrana tympani with the hammer and the chorda tympani, viewed from within, from behind, and from above. (Epitympanic recess labeled at upper right.)
The medial wall and part of the posterior and anterior walls of the right tympanic cavity, lateral view.
Latin recessus epitympanicus
Gray's p.1037
Anatomical terminology

The epitympanic recess is a hollow located on the superior/roof aspect of the middle ear.

Clinical significance

This recess is a possible route of spread of infection to the mastoid air cells located in the mastoid process of the temporal bone of the skull. Inflammation which has spread to the mastoid air cells is very difficult to drain and causes considerable pain. Before the advent of antibiotics it could only be drained by drilling a hole in the mastoid bone, a process known as mastoidectomy.[1]


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