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Transient isolated lingual nerve neuropraxia associated with general anaesthesia and laryngeal mask use: two case reports and a review of the literature.BACKGROUND: Transient, isolated lingual nerve neuropraxia is a rare complication following general anaesthesia. Reports implicate airway manipulation and we describe two new cases associated with laryngeal mask airway (LMA) and review the related English language literature. RESULTS: Unilateral numbness and loss of taste on the anterior tongue were the characteristic symptoms. Collation of literature data (median and range) with that from the new cases showed: patient age was 38 (20-61) years and female to male ratio was 1.2:1. Surgery time was 62.5 (20-150) min and symptom duration was 28 (7-120) days. CONCLUSION: Lingual neuropraxias reported have been transient and patients can be advised, despite disturbing symptoms, that recovery is anticipated in about 1 month. Lingual neuropraxia reports are becoming more frequent, perhaps associated with increasing LMA use. Research is recommended as modification to LMA cuff volume, pressure and/or position within the oral cavity might ameliorate the entity.