Distraction Therapy to Correct Trismus Following Noma

Trismus is a frequent complication of healed Noma infection and is caused by soft tissue and muscle contraction. Free-flap surgery is recommended to replace the missing oral mucosa and soft tissue. However, significant complications can occur if this surgery is performed in places like Africa, where conditions are usually less than optimal. In 2007, the authors started to treat patients with trismus in Niamey, Niger by distracting the soft tissue and muscle constriction between the jaws with a bone distractor continuously for 1 month with the aim of achieving a mouth opening of 3 cm. The distraction was limited to 1 mm/d. performed under local anesthesia with some sedation. Minor complications such as infection in the pin holes were easily managed. In 2009, 2 patients with trismus after Noma with a follow-up of 2 years were reported. Till date, the authors have successfully performed trismus release in more than 69 patients in Niamey and Guinea Bissau. The present study analyses the results of distraction therapy in 40 patients with follow-ups until 60 months. At the end of distraction, the mean interincisal distance was 2.7 ± 0.5 cm. Mouth opening 6 months after distraction had not reverted. However, 3 to 5 years after treatment, some signs of relapse were detected, with an average mouth opening of 1.5 ± 1.9 cm. Physiotherapy was unfortunately not feasible. The presented results strongly support the efficacy of distraction therapy to correct tri...
Source: Journal of Craniofacial Surgery - Category: Surgery Tags: Clinical Studies Source Type: research

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