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2003 Jun;112(6):522-4.

Stapedius muscle myoclonus.


Myoclonus of the middle ear is a very rare condition. We present the case of a 20-year-old soldier who was exposed to intense artillery noise during a fierce battle and immediately afterward complained of an incapacitating tinnitus in both ears. Microscopic examination of the ears demonstrated rapid rhythmic movements of the tympanic membrane coinciding with the tinnitus, which was also easily heard by the examiner. There was no evidence of palatal myoclonus, and thus the diagnosis of middle ear myoclonus was made. Exploratory tympanotomy confirmed the diagnosis of stapedial muscle myoclonus. Bilateral sectioning of the stapedial tendons brought immediate relief of the tinnitus to the patient. We review the literature of middle ear myoclonus and discuss the symptoms, evaluation, and management of this rare condition.

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