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Complete resection with conservation of cranial nerves is the primary goal of contemporary surgery for lower cranial nerve tumors. We describe the case of a patient with a schwannoma of the left glossopharyngeal nerve, operated on in our Neurosurgical Unit. The far lateral approach combined with laminectomy of the posterior arch of C1 was done in two steps. The procedure allowed total tumor resection and was found to be better than classic unilateral suboccipital or combined supra- and infratentorial approaches. The advantages and disadvantages of the far lateral transcondylar approach, compared to the other more common approaches, are discussed.