Emergency Head and Neck Radiology: Neck Infections

Jason A. McKellop, MD; Suresh K. Mukherji, MD, FACR

Disclosures

Appl Radiol. 2010;39(7):23-29. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction

Introduction

Emergency neck infections are diverse in both their presentation and their affected patient population; pathology ranges from a transient enlargement of a child's cervical lymph node to a rapidly spreading necrotizing fasciitis in an adult diabetic. Despite the widespread availability of antibiotics and early surgical intervention, deep neck infections still present significant morbidity and mortality in clinical centers. Complex neck anatomy can frequently obscure or delay diagnoses, so timely and appropriate radiological interpretation are critical to patient care. This article will review common neck infections that may be encountered in the emergency setting and detail some of their most salient findings on imaging.

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