Round window chamber and fustis: endoscopic anatomy and surgical implications

Daniele Marchioni, Davide Soloperto, Elena Colleselli*, Maria Fatima Tatti, Nirmal Patel, Nicholas Jufas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


The round window region is of critical importance in the anatomy of the middle ear. The aim of this paper is to describe its anatomy from an endoscopic point of view, emphasizing structures that have important surgical implications, in particular the fustis and the subcochlear canaliculus. The fustis, a smooth bony structure that forms the floor of the round window region, is a constant and important structure. It seems to indicate the round window membrane and the correct position of scala tympani. A structure connecting the round window region to the petrous apex, named the subcochlear canaliculus, is also described. A retrospective review of video recordings of endoscopic dissection and surgical procedures, carried out between June 2014 and February 2015, was conducted across two Tertiary university referral centers. A total of 42 dissections were analyzed in the study. We observed the fustis in all the cases and we identify two different anatomical conformations. The subcochlear canaliculus was found in 81.0 %, with a pneumatization direct to the petrous apex in 47.7 %. Conformation and limits of the round window niche may influence the surgical view of the round window membrane. Endoscopic approaches allow a very detailed view, which enables a comprehensive exploration of the round window region. Accurate knowledge of the anatomical relationships of this region has important advantages during middle ear surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1013-1019
Number of pages7
JournalSurgical and Radiologic Anatomy
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Round window region
  • Subcochlear canaliculus
  • Fustis
  • Endoscopic anatomy
  • Middle ear

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