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Year : 2008  |  Volume : 56  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 42--46

Taste dysfunction in vestibular schwannomas

Department of Neurosurgery, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sanjay Behari
Department of Neurosurgery, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Rae Bareli Road, Lucknow - 226 014, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0028-3886.39311

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Background: Gustatory dysfunction associated with vestibular schwannomas (VS) is a poorly represented clinical presentation. Materials and Methods: One hundred and forty-nine cases operated from 1997 to 2005 where at least six-month follow-up was available were included. All patients were tested for taste sensations using four modalities of standard taste solutions. Apart from the taste sensations, any altered or abnormal taste perceptions were recorded both in the preoperative and postoperative period. Results: After applying the exclusion criteria, the taste dysfunction was studied in 142 patients. The evidence of decreased taste sensation was found in 58 (40.8%) patients prior to surgery. Preoperatively, taste disturbance was found in 29 (37.2%) giant, 28 (45.9%) large and one (33.3%) medium-sized tumors, respectively. There were no significant age or sex-related differences. The postoperative taste disturbances were found in 65 (45.8%) patients. Among patients with anatomically preserved facial nerve, postoperative taste disturbances were found in 55 (42.3%) patients whereas nine (6.9%) patients reported improvement in taste sensations. Conclusions: Taste dysfunction is common following vestibular schwannoma surgery. Patient counseling prior to surgery is necessary to avoid any distress caused by taste dysfunction. Taste dysfunction should be included in the facial nerve functional grading system while assessing outcome.


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Online since 20th March '04
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