Practice abstract


British Dental Journal 198, 333 - 334 (2005)
Published online: 26 March 2005 | doi:10.1038/sj.bdj.4812171

Palatal and nasal necrosis resulting from cocaine misuse

N M Goodger1, J Wang2 & M A Pogrel3

  • Nasal inhalation of cocaine ('snorting') can have severe destructive effects on the nasal and palatal tissues.
  • The commonest causes of naso-palatal fistula are trauma, tumour, Wegener's granulomatosis and syphilitic gumma.
  • Palatal defects can be repaired using a variety of techniques.


The potential social and economic harm caused by cocaine addiction is well known. The wider health risks and potential nasal complications of septal perforation and nasal collapse are also recognised. We report a case of oro-nasal fistula secondary to cocaine misuse and discuss the aetiology, management and potential methods of repair.

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  1. Consultant Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, Kent and Canterbury Hospital, Ethelbert Road, Canterbury, Kent, CT 3NG
  2. Former resident, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of California, San Francisco
  3. Professor and Chairman, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of California, San Francisco.

Correspondence to: N M Goodger1 e-mail: nicgoodger@aol.com


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