Traumatic neuroma after neck dissection: CT characteristics four cases

L. F. Huang, J. L. Weissman, C. Y. Fan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Traumatic neuroma, an attempt by an injured nerve to regenerate, may present as a palpable nodule or an area sensitive to touch (trigger point) after neck dissection. The purpose of this study was to identify CT characteristics of traumatic neuroma in four patients after neck dissection. METHODS: Between April 1995 and November 1998, the CT studies in three men and one woman (ages, 45-64 years) who lind had a radical neck dissection and a nodule posterior to the carotid artery were reviewed retrospectively. CT was performed 1.5 to 6 years after neck dissection with clinical correlation and/or pathologic examination. Three patients lind squamous cell carcinoma of the upper aerodigestive tract and one lind a primary parotid adenocarcinoma. RESULTS: Three patients with a traumatic neuroma had a centrally radiolucent nodule with peripherally dense rim and intact layer of overlying fat, which was stable on CT studies for 1 to 2 years. One of these had a clinical trigger point. The fourth patient with a pathologically proved traumatic neuroma mixed with tumor had intact overlying fat, but the nodule lacked a radiolucent center and was not close to the carotid artery. CONCLUSION: The CT findings of a stable nodule that is posterior but close to the carotid artery with central radiolucency, a dense rim, and intact overlying fat, combined with the clinical features of a trigger point and a lack of interval growth, strongly suggest the diagnosis of traumatic neuroma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1676-1680
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology


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