Intraoral Endoscopic Ligation of Maxillary Artery in the Infratemporal Fossa
Ligation of the sphenopalatine and posterior nasal arteries is indicated for posterior epistaxis as initial treatment or when conservative measures fail. In some patients, a transnasal approach or its alternative transantral approach are not possible due to tumor filling the nasal corridor, pterygopalatine fossa, or maxillary sinus. Aim of this study was to evaluate feasibility of endoscopically assisted transoral approach for the ligation of the maxillary artery (MA). Six fresh cadaver specimens (12 sides), previously prepared with intravascular injections of colored latex, were dissected. A combined transnasal and transoral approach exposed the MA from the deep belly of the temporalis muscle laterally to its terminal branches medially. Anatomical relationships of the MA with the deep belly of the temporalis muscle and the lower head of the lateral pterygoid muscle, and feasibility of access to the MA via a transoral approach were assessed. In all specimens, the MA was found at the point where horizontal fibers of the lower head of the lateral pterygoid muscle cross the vertical fibers of the deep belly of the temporalis muscle. In 5 specimens, the artery ran anteriorly and laterally to lower head of the lateral pterygoid muscle, and in 1 specimen, it ran posteriorly and medially to this muscle, diving between its fibers. The modified endoscopically assisted transoral approach is feasible to ligate the MA. It can be used for proximal vascular control in cases when transnasal and transantral approaches are not viable.