Document Detail

Diagonal ear lobe crease and atherosclerosis: a review of the medical literature and oral and maxillofacial implications.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20970909     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: A significant number of individuals die from atherosclerotic disease of the coronary and carotid arteries without having classic risk factors and prodromal symptoms. A diagonal ear lobe crease (DELC) has been characterized in the medical literature as a marker that can identify high-risk patients having occult atherosclerosis. The oral and maxillofacial surgery literature, however, offers very little information on the subject.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The authors conducted a MEDLINE search using the key terms "earlobe crease," "ear lobe crease," "atherosclerosis," "cardiovascular disease," and "cerebrovascular disease." They selected articles published in peer-review journals and gave preference to articles reporting randomized controlled trials.
RESULTS: A majority of clinical, angiographic, and postmortem reports support the premise that DELC is a valuable extravascular physical sign able to distinguish some patients at risk of succumbing to atherosclerosis of the coronary arteries. Of particular interest to oral and maxillofacial surgeons is the reported association between individuals with DELC and the development of morbid cardiovascular events associated with the administration of general anesthesia. More recently, reports using B-mode ultrasound have also linked DELC to atherosclerosis of the carotid artery, and another report has related DELC to the presence of calcified carotid artery atheromas on panoramic radiographs. A minority of studies have, however, failed to support the association between DELC and atherosclerosis.
CONCLUSIONS: DELC is readily visible during presurgical/preanesthetic physical examination and, in conjunction with the patient's medical history, vital signs, and panoramic radiograph, may assist in risk assessment and the identification of individuals needing further evaluation.
Arthur H Friedlander; Crispian Scully
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review     Date:  2010-10-23
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of oral and maxillofacial surgery : official journal of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons     Volume:  68     ISSN:  1531-5053     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Oral Maxillofac. Surg.     Publication Date:  2010 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-11-24     Completed Date:  2010-12-23     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8206428     Medline TA:  J Oral Maxillofac Surg     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  3043-50     Citation Subset:  AIM; D; IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2010 American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. All rights reserved.
Hospital Dental Service, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Atherosclerosis / diagnosis*
Carotid Artery Diseases / diagnosis*
Coronary Disease / diagnosis*
Ear, External / anatomy & histology*
Risk Assessment / methods*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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