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Skull base surgery. 1998; 8(1): 1–9.
PMCID: PMC1656656

The Vulnerability of the Vein of Labbé During Combined Craniotomies of the Middle and Posterior Fossae


During combined middle and posterior cranial fossae (“petrosal”) approaches to the skull base, the anastamotic vein of Labbe, which bridges between the inferior surface of the temporal lobe and the transverse sinus is placed at risk. Occlusion of this vein, which may drain a large section of the temporal and parietal lobes, may lead to speech, memory, and/or other cognitive disorders. Labbe may be injured along its course on the inferior aspect of the temporal lobe where it may be laceraed during dural incision or thrombosed due to prolonged or overly vigorous retraction. The anastamotic segment of the vein, which bridges between the temporal lobe and transverse sinus, may be avulsed during elevation of the temporal lobe or injured during tentorial division. Labbé may course in close proximity to the upper surface of the tentorium or even travel within it for a short segment of its course en route to the transverse sinus. This article reviews the anatomy of the vein of Labbé, discusses its clinical significance, and highlights the technical points relevant to the preservation of this important structure.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
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