Background: This is a case of mucormycosis originated osteonecrosis of the maxilla extended to the cranial base, initially suspected of malignancy. The patient was first suspected with osteolytic sarcomatous lesion but was later diagnosed with total maxillary necrosis and cranial base through biopsy-proven invasive mucormycosis. Case presentation: A 71-year-old male was presented with unknown total maxillary osteonecrosis. CT and MRI results showed extensive osteolytic change with bone destruction of the cranial base, and PET-CT showed irregular hypermetabolic lesion in the area suspected of malignancy. The first biopsy results only presented tissue inflammation. Thus, several further endoscopic biopsy were performed through posterior pharyngeal wall. The patient was eventually diagnosed with mucormycosis and associated osteomyelitis with subsequent bone necrosis. With confirmed diagnosis, partial maxillectomy of the necrosed bone was performed under general anesthesia. At the 4 week follow-up, the patient showed full mucosal healing and no recurrence or aggravation of the maxilla and cranial base lesion was observed. Conclusions: Accurate diagnosis of atypical symptoms, timely diagnosis, and proper combination therapy of surgical intervention, antifungal agent, and antibiotic use for skull base osteomyelitis are all critical for proper treatment planning. In addition, biopsy and CT scans are essential in differentiating osteonecrosis from malignancy.
- Skull base