I got the styloidectomy! (plus promoting particular doctor)

This surgery changed my life. If you are near La Jolla in San Diego county, see Dr. Gaylis. I was the first patient he did an extraoral surgery on, and it is wonderful. I have not felt any more pain in the back of my throat since I got that surgery. The scar is minimal, not even noticeable. Get the surgery done and you will not have the daily pain like you probably do now.


Welcome to our forum & thank you for the great referral to Dr. Gaylis. His name has come up here in the past but only because he diagnosed ES. Now that he’s doing the surgery, I’ll add him to our Doctors List.

Super good news that you had a good outcome from his very first ES surgery! We’ve had other members who were willing to be the first ES surgery patient for other doctors & their outcomes weren’t as good so they needed revision surgery.

I have long maintained that “practicing medicine” is just that - practice. With every surgery a doctor does, new things are learned that help that doctor do even better going forward just as athletic practice helps an athlete to improve & excel.

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Was it a skull base removal?

How long since the surgery?

So pleased that you’ve had a successful surgery, that’s great to hear! Thanks for coming on to share your experience :+1:

It was extraoral, meaning through the neck instead of through the throat. The scar is hardly noticeable.

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It was not Dr. Gaylis’ first ES surgery. He had done two intraoral surgeries, meaning through the throat. I was his first extraoral surgery, meaning through the neck.


Ho are you doing now?

Was it skull base removal?

Thank you for the clarification re: the number of ES surgeries Dr. Gaylis has done. We advocate the transcervical (extraoral i.e. through the neck) approach over the intraoral approach on this forum because we’ve seen better results overall w/ the transcervical.

Does going through the neck not increase risk of nerve damage? Especially for those with EDS and cervical instability

I believe it decreases the risk because the nerves are monitored plus they can be seen by the surgeon as the surgery is performed. It also makes the styloid more visible & accessible to the skull base where intraoral does not. Monitoring plus being able to actually see the nerves goes far toward limiting/eliminating further damage to the nerves.

Another advantage of going through the neck is that sometimes a nerve will be wrapped around the styloid or tangled up w/ it & the external approach allows the surgeon to take care of such a situation more easily. I would think that the introral approach would not only keep a surgeon from knowing of that sort of problem but would definitely make it near impossible to take care of it w/o seriously damaging the nerve(s) in question. The intraoral approach is also more prone to infection during healing & is a more painful recovery.

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