Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of skullbasesurgInstructions for AuthorsSubscribe to Skull BaseAbout Skull BaseEditorial BoardThieme Medical PublishingSkull Base An Interdisciplinary Approach ...
Skull base surgery. 1993 October; 3(4): 182–192.
PMCID: PMC1656457

Surgical Therapy of Glomus Vagale Tumors


Lying between the carotid bifurcation and the jugular foramen, glomus vagale tumors share characteristics with paragangliomas of those two structures, such as invasion of the carotid artery, destruction of the skull base, and cranial neuropathies. This capability for local invasion provides a therapeutic challenge with regard to the proper assessment of tumor extent and the selection of appropriate treatment. In order to clarify an approach to the management of glomus vagale tumors, we reviewed a 10-year experience with 15 patients treated for this tumor at the University of Zürich Department of Otolaryngology, using a new system of classification. This system highlights the relative position of a vagal paraganglioma to the jugular foramen and is helpful in designing the proper therapy. Pitfalis in surgical technique, recommended preoperative evaluation, and the roles of balloon occlusion and irradiation in the treatment of these tumors, are discussed.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (3.0M), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Davidson J, Gullane P. Glomus vagale tumors. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1988 Jul;99(1):66–70. [PubMed]
  • Black FO, Myers EN, Parnes SM. Surgical management of vagal chemodectomas. Laryngoscope. 1977 Aug;87(8):1259–1269. [PubMed]
  • Biller HF, Lawson W, Som P, Rosenfeld R. Glomus vagale tumors. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 1989 Jan;98(1 Pt 1):21–26. [PubMed]
  • Palaskas CW, Fisch U, Valavanis A, Pfaltz M. Permanent preoperative carotid artery occlusion and carotid body tumor surgery. Skull Base Surg. 1993;3(1):22–31. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Rothstein SG, Persky MS, Horii S. Evaluation of malignant invasion of the carotid artery by CT scan and ultrasound. Laryngoscope. 1988 Mar;98(3):321–324. [PubMed]
  • Andrews JC, Valavanis A, Fisch U. Management of the internal carotid artery in surgery of the skull base. Laryngoscope. 1989 Dec;99(12):1224–1229. [PubMed]
  • Atkinson DP, Jacobs LA, Weaver AW. Elective carotid resection for squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. Am J Surg. 1984 Oct;148(4):483–488. [PubMed]
  • Martinez SA, Oller DW, Gee W, deFries HO. Elective carotid artery resection. Arch Otolaryngol. 1975 Dec;101(12):744–747. [PubMed]
  • Loré JM, Jr, Boulos EJ. Resection and reconstruction of the carotid artery in metastatic squamous cell carcinoma. Am J Surg. 1981 Oct;142(4):437–442. [PubMed]
  • Green JD, Jr, Olsen KD, DeSanto LW, Scheithauer BW. Neoplasms of the vagus nerve. Laryngoscope. 1988 Jun;98(6 Pt 1):648–654. [PubMed]
  • Leonetti JP, Brackmann DE. Glomus vagale tumor: the significance of early vocal cord paralysis. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1989 Jun;100(6):533–537. [PubMed]
  • Heinrich MC, Harris AE, Bell WR. Metastatic intravagal paraganglioma. Case report and review of the literature. Am J Med. 1985 Jun;78(6 Pt 1):1017–1024. [PubMed]
  • Springate SC, Weichselbaum RR. Radiation or surgery for chemodectoma of the temporal bone: a review of local control and complications. Head Neck. 1990 Jul-Aug;12(4):303–307. [PubMed]
  • Konefal JB, Pilepich MV, Spector GJ, Perez CA. Radiation therapy in the treatment of chemodectomas. Laryngoscope. 1987 Nov;97(11):1331–1335. [PubMed]
  • Cummings BJ, Beale FA, Garrett PG, Harwood AR, Keane TJ, Payne DG, Rider WD. The treatment of glomus tumors in the temporal bone by megavoltage radiation. Cancer. 1984 Jun 15;53(12):2635–2640. [PubMed]
  • Reddy EK, Mansfield CM, Hartman GV. Chemodectoma of glomus jugulare. Cancer. 1983 Jul 15;52(2):337–340. [PubMed]
  • Wang ML, Hussey DH, Doornbos JF, Vigliotti AP, Wen BC. Chemodectoma of the temporal bone: a comparison of surgical and radiotherapeutic results. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1988 Apr;14(4):643–648. [PubMed]
  • Hawthorne MR, Makek MS, Harris JP, Fisch U. The histopathological and clinical features of irradiated and nonirradiated temporal paragangliomas. Laryngoscope. 1988 Mar;98(3):325–331. [PubMed]
  • Challa VR, Crone KR, Ferree CR, Moody DM, Kelly DL., Jr Chronic vermal herniation in a case of osteosarcoma of the occipital bone. Neurosurgery. 1986 Feb;18(2):180–185. [PubMed]
  • Springate SC, Haraf D, Weichselbaum RR. Temporal bone chemodectomas--comparing surgery and radiation therapy. Oncology (Williston Park) 1991 Apr;5(4):131–143. [PubMed]
  • Huvos AG, Woodard HQ, Cahan WG, Higinbotham NL, Stewart FW, Butler A, Bretsky SS. Postradiation osteogenic sarcoma of bone and soft tissues. A clinicopathologic study of 66 patients. Cancer. 1985 Mar 15;55(6):1244–1255. [PubMed]

Articles from Skull Base Surgery are provided here courtesy of Thieme Medical Publishers