BACKGROUND Due to its long intracranial course, the abducens nerve is vulnerable in case of acceleration injury of the head. In rare cases, this may lead to posttraumatic paralysis of this cranial nerve. CASE DESCRIPTION A 4-year-old girl visited the emergency department after sustaining a head trauma. Neurological examination revealed no focal abnormalities at first. Three days later, she experienced diplopia, the consequence of isolated abducens nerve paralysis. CT and MRI brain imaging revealed no abnormalities. We treated her with an eye patch for a short time. At examination after 1 year, she was no longer experiencing any symptoms and the paralysis had almost completely disappeared. CONCLUSION Isolated paralysis of the abducens nerve may occur until up to 6 days after a trauma, without any visible intracranial abnormalities revealed by imaging. Even though only few children with this condition have been described, prognosis seems to be favourable and symptoms disappear in the majority of patients. Frequent follow-up by the ophthalmologist and the orthoptist is recommended, possibly with symptomatic treatment of the diplopia.
|Journal||Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|