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1.  Comparison Between Manual and Semiautomated Volumetric Measurements of Pituitary Adenomas 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):365-372.
Linear measurements have many limitations. The aim of this study is to compare manual and semiautomated volumetric measurements of pituitary adenomas. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of 38 patients with pituitary adenomas were analyzed. Preoperative MRI was acquired on a 1.5 T. MRI volumes of the pituitary adenomas were obtained by two methods: manual (MA) and semiautomated (SA). The concurrent validity for SA and MA methods on 38 patients in the form of correlation coefficient was 0.97 (p < 0.0001). The intraobserver and the interobserver correlation coefficients for SA volumes were both 0.98, as for the intraobserver MA volumes were 0.98. Although the results of both methods are comparable, analysis of volumetric measurements by SA method is more time-efficient than MA segmentation. Precision in volumetric measurement techniques is likely to increase reliability of posttherapeutic monitoring of pituitary adenomas.
PMCID: PMC3312124  PMID: 22547962
Pituitary adenoma; volumetric measurement; correlation coefficient; tumor size
2.  Qualitative and Quantitative Radio-Anatomical Variation of the Posterior Clinoid Process 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):373-378.
This study was conducted to investigate the radiological anatomy of the posterior clinoid process (PCP) to highlight preoperative awareness of its variations and its relationships to other skull base landmarks. The PCPs of 36, three-dimensional computed tomographic cadaveric heads were evaluated by studying the gross anatomy of the PCP and by measuring the distances between the PCP and other skull base anatomical landmarks relevant to transnasal or transcranial skull base approaches. PCP variations were found in five specimens (14%): in two the dorsum sellae was absent, in one the PCP and the anterior clinoid process (ACP) were connected unilaterally and in two bilaterally. The mean distance between the right/left PCP and the crista galli was 45.14 ± 4.0 standard deviation (SD_/46.24 ± 4.5 SD, respectively, while the distance to the middle point of the basion at the level of the foramen magnum was 40.41 ± 5.1 SD/41.0 ± 5.2 SD, respectively. The mean distance between the PCP and the ACP was 12.03 ± 3.18 SD on the right side and 12.11 ± 2.77 SD on the left. The data provided highlights the importance of careful preoperative evaluation of the PCP and of its relationships to other commonly encountered skull base landmarks. This information may give an idea of the exposure achievable through different transcranial and transnasal approaches. This is especially relevant when neuronavigation is not available.
PMCID: PMC3312125  PMID: 22547963
Radio-anatomical study; posterior clinoid processes; skull base surgery; transnasal approaches
3.  Skull Base Surgery for the Management of Deeply Invasive Scalp Cancer 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):343-350.
Skin cancer involving the scalp is a common malignancy in the “sun belt areas of the United States.” Most early lesions are well managed by primary care physicians and dermatologists. Occasionally we encounter basal cell, squamous cell, and rarely Merkel cell carcinomas that have failed local therapy and present with large tumors invading full thickness scalp, calvarium, and even underlying dura. We describe our experience with 52 such tumors and illustrate their resections and reconstruction. For full thickness lesions we generally do a wide field resection of skin and underlying calvarium followed by dural resection. Reconstruction is usually with dural replacement, calvarial reconstruction with titanium mesh, and cutaneous reconstruction with a musculocutaneous free flap or muscular free flap with an overlying skin graft. Complications, survival rates, and recurrence rates will be presented.
PMCID: PMC3312126  PMID: 22547959
Skull base; skin cancer; otolaryngology; surgery; scalp carcinoma; free flap; dural invasion
4.  Outcomes of Temporal Bone Resection for Locally Advanced Parotid Cancer 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):389-396.
This study was conducted to report outcomes and identify factors predictive of survival and recurrence in patients undergoing lateral temporal bone resection (LTBR) as part of an extended radical parotidectomy for parotid cancer. This is a retrospective cohort study which includes all patients undergoing LTBR for parotid cancer between 1994 and 2010 at two affiliated academic centers. Survival and recurrence rates were analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method and Cox multivariate regression. A total of 12 patients with median follow-up duration of 30.6 months were included: 6 de novo cases and 6 patients referred after local recurrence. Actuarial locoregional control at 2 years was 73%. Most patients (11; 92%) developed disease recurrence with distant metastases the most common site of first failure (83%). Overall and disease-specific survival rates were 80% at 2 years and 22.5% at 5 years. Recurrence-free survival (RFS) was 67% at 2 years and 8.3% at 5 years. On multivariate analysis, surgical margin status was an independent predictor of RFS (hazard ratio = 3.85, p = 0.045). In advanced parotid cancer, LTBR with a goal of gross total resection offers good locoregional control with an acceptable complication rate. The benefits of this surgery must be balanced with the morbidity and low likelihood of long-term survival, with most patients ultimately experiencing disease recurrence and death.
PMCID: PMC3312127  PMID: 22547966
Temporal bone resection; parotid cancer; outcomes
5.  Multicompartmental Trigeminal Schwannomas: Management Strategies and Outcome 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):351-358.
Trigeminal schwannomas (TS), though the second most common intracranial schwannomas, represent only 0.8 to 8% of all Schwannomas. Advancement in imaging and microsurgical techniques has led to a remarkable improvement in the outcome of these benign tumors. Multicompartmental TS, though extensive, have an excellent outcome after surgery. In this article, we present our experience in the management of multicompartmental TS (types middle/posterior [MP], middle/extracranial [ME], and middle/posterior and extracranial [MPE]) and outcome in this rather uncommon group of tumors. This retrospective study included all the cases of multicompartmental TS operated at our institute from 1999 to 2009. The medical data were analyzed retrospectively. The demographic profile, clinical features, radiological findings, management strategies, postoperative complications, length of hospitalization, and outcome were noted. Follow-up data were collected from outpatient department records. The range and average duration of follow-up were noted. There were a total of 43 patients with TS operated over this period. Among them, 4 were type B, 5 type C, 11 type D, 18 type E, and 5 type F. The study included 26 patients (4 type B, 18 type E, and 4 type B). A variety of approaches were used to approach the tumor. Of 26, 23 patients had a gross total or near-total excision while 2 patients were lost to follow-up. Among the three patients who had a near-total excision and follow-up magnetic resonance imaging showed a small residual tumor, two are on close follow-up with no increase in the size of the tumor over a follow-up period of 3 years, the other patient is a 5-year-old boy who is too young for radiosurgery and is on follow-up. There was no mortality while four patients have had fresh permanent postoperative deficits. Multicompartmental TS are a rare, complex but eminently treatable group of tumors. A variety of surgical approaches can be used to excise the tumor. The choice of approach needs to be individualized with total excision providing excellent results.
PMCID: PMC3312128  PMID: 22547960
Trigeminal schwannomas; multicompartmental; review
6.  Normal Life Expectancy for Paraganglioma Patients: A 50-Year-Old Cohort Revisited 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):385-388.
The objective of this study was to assess the long-term survival of patients with a paraganglioma of the head and neck compared with the survival of the general Dutch population. This historic cohort study was conducted using nationwide historical data of paraganglioma patients. We retrieved a cohort of 86 patients diagnosed with a paraganglioma of the head and neck between 1945 and 1960 in the Netherlands. Dates of death were retrieved from the national bureau of genealogy. Survival after diagnosis was compared with age and sex adjusted survival in the general population, by means of Wilcoxon signed rank test and Kaplan-Meier actuarial survival curves. Although surgery had more complications in the studied era than today and the death of five patients with carotid body tumors caused immediate excess mortality, the survival of the followed cohort was not significantly reduced if compared with the general population. Paragangliomas of the head and neck do not reduce life expectancy.
PMCID: PMC3312129  PMID: 22547965
Paraganglioma; carotid body tumor; glomus tumor; survival
7.  Review of Skull Base Reconstruction Using Locoregional Flaps and Free Flaps in Children and Adolescents 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):359-364.
Tumors of the skull base are rare in children, and reconstruction in such patients has rarely been reported. We reviewed 16 cases of skull base reconstruction in patients under 18 years. The study group consisted of 10 boys and 6 girls, whose ages ranged from 2 to 17 years. Of the 16 cases, eight tumors were benign and eight were malignant. Defects were anterior in six cases, lateral in eight cases, and anterolateral in two cases. Reconstruction was performed with locoregional flaps in 11 cases and with free flaps in 5 cases. No significant difference was found between locoregional flaps and free flaps in total operative time, intraoperative blood loss, or postoperative hospital stay. However, in some cases, total operative time, reconstruction time, and blood loss increased to a degree unacceptable for pediatrics. Minor complications occurred in three patients and a major complication occurred in one case. Of four patients, three patients with postoperative complications had undergone chemoradiotherapy. Because of the physical weakness of pediatric patients, complicated reconstructive procedure should be avoided. We believe locoregional flaps will become the first choice for reconstruction. However, if patients have large, complex defects and have received radiotherapy, appropriate free flaps should be used to avoid postoperative complications.
PMCID: PMC3312130  PMID: 22547961
Skull base; skull base reconstruction; pediatrics; child
8.  Management of Large and Giant Vestibular Schwannomas 
Skull Base  2011;21(6):379-384.
The study was conducted to analyze outcomes following surgical management of large and giant vestibular schwannomas and management options for residual disease. This retrospective case note study includes patients who had undergone microsurgical resection of sporadic, large, or giant vestibular schwannomas from 1986 to 2008. Tumors are classified as large if the largest extracanalicular diameter was 3.5 cm or greater and giant if 4.5 cm or greater. The study included 45 patients (33 large, 12 giant tumors), mean tumor size 4.1 cm. Total excision was achieved in 14 cases (31.1%), near-total in 26 (57.8%), and subtotal in 5 (11.1%). Facial nerve outcome was House-Brackmann Grade I/II in 25 cases (55.6%), III/IV in 16 (35.6%), and V/VI in 4 (8.9%). No recurrence has been detected in those undergoing a complete resection. No residual tumor growth been observed in 15 of 26 who underwent near-total resection (57.7%). Of 11 patients, 10 received further treatment as their residual tumors showed growth. In the subtotal excision group, one patient died, three have demonstrated no growth, and one residual tumor has grown slightly but not required intervention. Optimal management for patients with large or giant vestibular schwannomas has yet to be determined. Management decisions must balance long term function with tumor control.
PMCID: PMC3312131  PMID: 22547964
Large vestibular schwannomas; management; residual disease; stereotactic radiotherapy
9.  Endoscopic Endonasal Infrasellar Approach to the Sellar and Suprasellar Regions: Technical Note 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):335-342.
We report a technical variation of the endoscopic endonasal approach to the sellar and suprasellar regions which relies on the use of a 45-degree angled endoscope. The so-called “infrasellar approach” aims at excising lesions situated within the intermediate and posterior lobes of the pituitary gland without damaging the anterior lobe, thus potentially minimizing endocrinological morbidity. In this regard the endoscopic infrasellar approach might be advantageous in selected cases when compared with the traditional transsphenoidal approach with the microscope. We describe the technique and illustrate it with representative clinical cases.
PMCID: PMC3312132  PMID: 22451835
Endoscopic endonasal approach; infrasellar approach; 45-degrees angled endoscope; Rathke's cleft cysts; Cushing disease; hypothalamic pilocytic astrocytoma
10.  Fibrin Sealant Injection: An Aid to Reduce Venous Bleeding during Jugular Bulb and Sigmoid Sinus Dissection in Glomus Jugulare (Jugulotympanic Paraganglioma) Surgery 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):309-312.
Glomus jugulare (jugulotympanic paraganglioma) surgery requires tumor dissection in the region of the jugular bulb, upper internal jugular vein, and sigmoid sinus. Despite ligation or external compression of the sigmoid sinus proximally and ligation of the internal jugular vein distally, troublesome venous bleeding can arise from the inferior petrosal sinus or condylar veins at the medial wall of the jugular bulb. Excessive packing in this area can place the integrity of the lower cranial nerves at risk. We report a technique in which Tisseel® fibrin sealant is injected into the ligated sigmoid sinus and internal jugular vein. This forms an internal cast around the tumor in the sigmoid-jugular complex and helps seal the inferior petrosal sinus and condylar veins. This allows for safer dissection with reduced venous bleeding. Our experience in five cases has shown this technique to be effective.
PMCID: PMC3312133  PMID: 22451831
Glomus jugulare; jugular foramen; paraganglioma; Tisseel fibrin sealant; hemostasis
11.  Evaluation of Three Cases Using a Novel Titanium Mesh System—Skull-Fit® with Orbital Wall (Skull-Fit WOW®)—For Cranial Base Reconstructions 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):279-286.
Cranial base reconstructions associated with tumor resections around the orbital wall often require that both the upper and lateral orbital walls be reconstructed during a single procedure. Previously, we used titanium mesh plates that were preoperatively fabricated based on three-dimensional models. Although these plates are precise and do not increase the probability of infection, we still had to use autologous bones to reconstruct the orbital walls. Recently, we developed a new titanium mesh plate—called Skull-Fit®—with orbital wall (Skull-Fit WOW®), enabling us to reconstruct the cranial base and orbital walls without bone grafts. Here, we report on three reconstruction cases in which the novel titanium mesh-orbital wall system was used. In all three cases, the customized titanium mesh system performed satisfactorily with little, if any, complications.
PMCID: PMC3312134  PMID: 22451827
Titanium mesh plate; skull base reconstruction; Skull-Fit WOW®; meningioma
12.  Osseointegrated Implant Applications in Cosmetic and Functional Skull Base Rehabilitation 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):303-308.
This study discusses the indications, outcomes, and complications in patients that underwent osseointegrated implantation for skull base rehabilitation. We conducted a retrospective review of eight patients with skull base defects who had undergone implantation of a facial prosthetic retention device ± bone-anchored hearing aid at a tertiary academic referral center. Descriptive analysis of applications, techniques, outcomes, and complications were reviewed. The majority of patients were males (n = 6) with previously diagnosed skull base malignancy (n = 5) with an average age of 46 (range, 14 to 77). All patients received an implanted facial prosthetic device either for an aural (n = 7) or orbital (n = 1) prosthesis. There were only two complications that included infection (n = 1) and implant extrusion (n = 1). Osseointegrated implantation of abutments for anchoring prosthetic devices in patients for skull base rehabilitation provides an excellent cosmetic option with minimal complications.
PMCID: PMC3312135  PMID: 22451830
Craniofacial implants; facial prosthesis; skull base; bone-anchored hearing aid; rehabilitation
13.  Long-Term Follow-Up of Microvascular Decompression for Trigeminal Neuralgia 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):313-322.
We conducted a study to evaluate the follow-up characteristics of patients with trigeminal neuralgia (TN) and to evaluate the factors affecting long-term outcome of microvascular decompression (MVD) in TN. Between 1983 and 2003, 156 patients with TN treated with MVD by 4 neurosurgeons at University Medical Centre Groningen/the Netherlands were evaluated. Baseline data from operative outcome were evaluated using univariate and multivariate analysis. The group consisted of 156 patients with TN: 90 females and 66 males with a median follow-up period of 9.7 years. The average age of initial symptoms was 51 years. The average duration of symptoms was 58 months. Postoperative 22 patients had a facial hyperpathia or hyperesthesia. Postoperatively, 137 patients had immediate relief. Postoperatively 1 year, 140 patients still had a good outcome of the operation. Twenty-seven patients with good immediate postoperative results had recurrent pain. From the group of patients with typical TN, 82% had good long-term results after operation. Patients with typical TN and immediate postoperative remission, in univariate analysis, had significantly more often an excellent/good postoperative outcome. Immediate postoperative remission is an independent predictive factor for a good long-term outcome. The long-term results of MVD in majority of patients were good with no mortalities and no major morbidities. Patients with typical TN had better long-term outcomes and less recurrence.
PMCID: PMC3312136  PMID: 22451832
Microvascular decompression; trigeminal neuralgia; typical trigeminal neuralgia; Jannetta; long-term follow-up
14.  Expectant Management of Vestibular Schwannoma: A Retrospective Multivariate Analysis of Tumor Growth and Outcome 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):295-302.
We conducted a retrospective observational study to assess the consequences of conservative management of vestibular schwannoma (VS). Data were collected from tertiary neuro-otological referral units in United Kingdom. The study included 59 patients who were managed conservatively with radiological diagnosis of VS. The main outcome measures were growth rate and rate of failure of conservative management. Multivariate analysis sought correlation between tumor growth and (i) demographic features, (ii) tumor characteristics. The mean tumor growth was 0.66 mm/y. 11 patients (19%) required intervention. Mean time to intervention was 37 months with two notable late “failures” occurring at 75 and 84 months. Tumors extending into the cerebellopontine angle (CPA) grew significantly faster than intracanalicular tumors (p = 0.0045). No association was found between growth rate and age, sex, tumor laterality, facial nerve function, and grade of hearing loss. Conservative management is acceptable for a subset of patients. Tumors extending into the CPA at diagnosis grow significantly faster than intracanalicular tumors. No growth within 5 years of surveillance does not guarantee a continued indolent growth pattern; surveillance must therefore continue.
PMCID: PMC3312137  PMID: 22451829
Vestibular schwannoma; conservative; surveillance
15.  Petrous Carotid Exposure with Eustachian Tube Preservation: A Morphometric Elucidation 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):329-334.
Inadvertent injury to eustachian tube leading to cerebrospinal fluid rhinorrhea is a known complication associated with drilling of Glasscock's triangle to expose the horizontal petrous internal carotid artery (ICA) for management of difficult tumors (especially malignant) or aneurysms at the cranial base. Contrary to the usual approach, we hypothesize that a “medial-to-lateral” approach to Glasscock's triangle drilling will minimize eustachian tube injury. Four formalin-fixed human cadaveric heads were dissected, and underwent appropriate morphometric analysis; yielding a total of eight datasets. The diameter of the horizontal petrous ICA exposed was 4.7 ± 0.9 mm (range, 3.8 to 5.6 mm).The mean distance from the medial carotid wall midpoint to the medial-most point on the eustachian tube was 6.35 ± 0.58 mm (range, 5.4 to 7.1 mm), yielding a “safety zone” for eustachian tube, ranging 0.2 to 1.9 mm lateral to the lateral carotid wall. With the medial-to-lateral approach, the eustachian tube remained preserved in all the specimens. The results of our study provide a practical, consistent, and safe method of maximizing horizontal petrous carotid artery exposure while minimizing the eustachian tube injury.
PMCID: PMC3312138  PMID: 22451834
Petrous; carotid; eustachian tube; morphometric
16.  Secondary Trigeminal Neuralgia in Cerebellopontine Angle Tumors 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):287-294.
The analysis of the treatment results in patients with cerebellopontine angle (CPA) tumors, manifested as trigeminal neuralgia (TN). During the 10-year period from 1998 to 2008, 14 patients with verified CPA tumors that had the typical manifestations of TN were operated on at our hospital (5.8% from all patients with TN who underwent surgery). In nine cases the epidermoid was identified; three patients had meningioma, one patient had acoustic neurinoma, and one patient had lipoma. The follow-up of all patients lasted at least 12 months. The intraoperative assessment identified the three variants of relationship between the tumors and neurovascular structures: (1) tumor grows around the trigeminal nerve; (2) the tumor causes compression and displacement of the trigeminal nerve; and (3) tumor presses the arterial vessel to the trigeminal nerve by moving the vessel or nerve. For six patients, with removal of tumor a microvascular decompression of the trigeminal nerve was performed. Complete pain relief was achieved in 12 patients (86%). TN is an expectative symptom of CPA tumors. The most frequent cause of secondary TN of CPA tumors is epidermoid. All patients with manifestations of TN should undergo the magnetic resonance imaging for early diagnosis of CPA tumor.
PMCID: PMC3312139  PMID: 22451828
Trigeminal neuralgia; cerebellopontine angle tumor; microvascular decompression; epidermoid
17.  Repositioning of Cranial Bone Flaps Cut with a Diamond-Coated Threadwire Saw: 5-Year Experience with Cosmetic Cranioplasty without Fixation Devices 
Skull Base  2011;21(5):323-328.
Artificial fixation systems for cranial bone flaps have problems related to their materials and designs. We developed an alternative technique for supratentorial craniotomy that employs a diamond-coated threadwire saw (diamond T-saw), originally developed for spinal surgery, and reduces the bone gap for fitted bone flap fixation. The study subjects were 77 adults undergoing elective supratentorial craniotomy. After placing a burr hole at each corner of the craniotomy, we performed osteotomy between adjacent burr holes to approximately one-third of the length of the osteotomy with a craniotome; this leaves a bony bridge at each corner. The diamond T-saw was introduced between adjacent burr holes through the epidural space and a bridge was cut with reciprocating strokes. On closure, the bridge firmly supports the flap and only sutures are needed for fixation. Successful bone flap fixation was obtained in all followed-up cases. There were no technique-related complications such as dural laceration, flap displacement, or resorption. Our method is ideal for bone cuts in cosmetic cranioplasty; it is easy, safe, and inexpensive and avoids the need for flap fixation with artificial devices.
PMCID: PMC3312140  PMID: 22451833
Craniotomy; cranioplasty; diamond threadwire saw
18.  Harvey Cushing's Approaches to Tumors in His Early Career: From the Skull Base to the Cranial Vault 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):271-276.
In this report, we review Dr. Cushing's early surgical cases at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, revealing details of his early operative approaches to tumors of the skull base and cranial vault. Following Institutional Review Board approval, and through the courtesy of the Alan Mason Chesney Archives, we reviewed the Johns Hopkins Hospital surgical files from 1896 to 1912. Participants included four adult patients and one child who underwent surgical resection of bony tumors of the skull base and the cranial vault. The main outcome measures were operative approach and condition recorded at the time of discharge. The indications for surgery included unspecified malignant tumor of the basal meninges and temporal bone, basal cell carcinoma, osteoma of the posterior skull base, and osteomas of the frontal and parietofrontal cranial vault. While Cushing's experience with selected skull base pathology has been previously reported, the breadth of his contributions to operative approaches to the skull base has been neglected.
PMCID: PMC3312114  PMID: 22470271
Harvey Cushing; skull base; cranial vault; neuro-oncology
19.  Transsphenoidal Resection of Sellar Tumors Using High-Field Intraoperative Magnetic Resonance Imaging 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):223-232.
There has been increasing experience in the utilization of intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging (iMRI) for intracranial surgery. Despite this trend, only a few U.S centers have examined the use of this technology for transsphenoidal resection of tumors of the sella. We present the largest series in North America examining the role of iMRI for pituitary adenoma resection. We retrospectively reviewed our institutional experience of 59-patients who underwent transsphenoidal procedures for sellar and suprasellar tumors with iMRI guidance. Of these, 52 patients had a histological diagnosis of pituitary adenoma. The technical results of this subgroup were examined. A 1.5-T iMRI was integrated with the BrainLAB (Feldkirchen, Germany) neuronavigation system. The majority (94%) of tumors in our series were macroadenomas. Seventeen percent of tumors were confined to the sella, 49% had suprasellar extensions without involvement of the cavernous sinus, 34% had frank cavernous sinus invasion. All patients underwent at least one iMRI, and 19% required one or more additional sets of intraoperative imaging. In 58% of patients, iMRI led to the surgeon attempting more resection. A gross total resection was obtained in 67% of the patients with planned total resections. There was one case of permanent postoperative diabetes insipidus and no other instances of new hormone replacement. In summary, iMRI was most useful for tumors of the sella with and without suprasellar extension where the information from the iMRI extended the complete resection rate from 40 to 72% and 55 to 88%, respectively. As one would expect, it did not substantially increase the rate of resection of tumors with cavernous sinus invasion. Overall, iMRI was particularly useful in guiding resection safely, aiding in clinical decision making, and allowing identification and preservation of the pituitary stalk and normal pituitary gland. Limitations of the iMRI include a need for additional personnel and training as well as additional operative time, which diminishes over time as personnel learn to optimize workflow efficiency. Additional costs are mitigated in part by using the iMRI as an immediate postoperative scan. Other data emerging from our experience suggest that preservation of normal gland and thus avoidance of hypopituitarism may be improved by iMRI use, but longer follow-up periods are required to test this conclusion. iMRI can detect unsuspected complications sooner than routine postoperative imaging, potentially leading to improved outcomes. However, larger studies are needed.
PMCID: PMC3312115  PMID: 22470265
Intraoperative MRI; pituitary; transsphenoidal
20.  Morbidity Profile and Functional Outcome of Modified Facial Translocation Approaches for Skull Base Tumors 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):255-260.
The primary objective of this study was to evaluate morbidity associated with facial translocation approaches for skull base and results of various technical modifications. Forty consecutive patients who underwent facial translocation approaches for accessing skull base tumors from July 2005 to June 2010 were included in this study. There were 25 patients who underwent standard facial translocation, 4 patients medial mini, and 11 patients underwent extended facial translocation. Thirteen patients had benign disease and 27 patients had malignant disease. Resection was R0 in 36 and R1 in 4 patients. Most patients had acceptable cosmetic results. None of the patients had problems related to occlusion or speech and swallowing. The commonest complication observed was nasal crusting in 16 patients. Grade 2 trismus and exposure of mini plate was seen in three patients. Two patients developed necrosis of translocated bone. Three patients developed palatal fistula before modification of palatal incision. Facial translocation provides a satisfactory access for adequate clearance of skull base tumors with satisfactory aesthetic and functional results. With modifications of the surgical technique and implementation of new surgical tools, the morbidity of facial translocation approaches will continue to decrease.
PMCID: PMC3312116  PMID: 22470269
Facial translocation approach; morbidity; skull base; infratemporal fossa
21.  Perioperative Outcomes in Patients Undergoing the Transglabellar/Subcranial Approach to the Anterior Skull Base 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):215-222.
We analyzed the effect of predefined patient demographic, disease, and perioperative variables on the rate of complications in the perioperative period following subcranial surgery for anterior skull base lesion. A secondary goal of this study was to provide a benchmark rate of perioperative mortality and morbidity through comprehensive analysis of complications. Retrospective review of a consecutive series of patients (n = 164) who underwent the transglabellar/subcranial approach to lesions of the anterior skull base between December 1995 and November 2009 in a tertiary referral center. Main outcome measures were perioperative morbidity and mortality. No perioperative mortalities were observed over the period of consecutive review. The overall complication rate was 28.7%, with 30 (18%) patients experiencing major complication. Multivariate analysis revealed that the following variables were independent predictors of perioperative complication of any type: positive margins on final pathology, perioperative lumbar drain placement, and dural invasion. The subcranial approach provides excellent access to the anterior skull base with zero mortality and acceptable morbidity in comparison with other contemporary open surgical approaches. It should be considered a procedure with distinct advantages in terms of perioperative morbidity and mortality when selecting a therapeutic approach for patients with anterior skull base lesions.
PMCID: PMC3312117  PMID: 22470264
Subcranial; anterior skull base; skull base neoplasms/surgery; postoperative complications
22.  On “Clivus Chordoma: Is It Enough to Image the Primary Site?” (Skull Base 2010;20:111–113) 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):277-278.
PMCID: PMC3312118  PMID: 22470272
23.  Treatment Strategies for Complex Intracranial Aneurysms: Review of a 12-Year Experience at the University of Cincinnati 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):233-242.
Complex intracranial aneurysms (CIAs) include those classified as giant, those located in brain regions of technically difficult access, or that involve arterial trunks/branches, and/or have complicated wall structure. We reviewed retrospectively our management of such lesions in a 12-year period. From 1997 to 2009, 192 patients were admitted with CIAs (133 females, 59 males; average age 55 years); 128 presented with subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) and 64 with unruptured, symptomatic CIAs. The SAH group had 73 anterior- and 55 posterior-circulation aneurysms. Most frequent location was middle cerebral artery. Treatment strategies included clipping (65.6%), coiling/stenting (28.1%), bypass (3.1%), no treatment (3.1%). Coiling/stenting was exclusively used for posterior-circulation aneurysms. Outcomes were good (modified Rankin Scale [mRS] 0 to 2) in 54 patients (42.2%), fair (mRS = 3 to 4) in 38 (29.7%), and poor (mRS = 5 to 6) in 36 (28.1%). Among unruptured CIAs, there were 47 anterior- and 17 posterior-circulation aneurysms. Most frequent location was ophthalmic. Thirty (46.9%) were clipped, 19 (29.7%) coiled, 6 (9.4%) by-passed, 2 (3.1%) wrapped, and 7 (10.9%) had no treatment. Outcomes were good in 57 patients (89%) and fair in 7 (11%). Good outcomes were obtained in unruptured CIAs using a multidisciplinary approach. Ruptured CIAs carry a significantly worse prognosis than overall SAH patients.
PMCID: PMC3312119  PMID: 22470266
Cerebral aneurysm; clipping; coiling; cerebral revascularization
24.  Transfacial Approaches to the Skull Base: The Early Contributions of Harvey Cushing 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):207-214.
In this report, we review Dr. Cushing's early surgical cases at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, revealing details of his early use of craniofacial approaches for malignant pathology of the skull base. Following Institutional Review Board approval, and through the courtesy of the Alan Mason Chesney Archives, we reviewed the Johns Hopkins Hospital surgical files from 1896 to 1912, which included three patients who underwent surgical treatment of lesions involving the skull base through craniofacial approaches: two adults and one child (range 3 to 43 years). The main outcome measures were length of stay and condition recorded at the time of discharge. The indications for surgery included osteochondroma of the sphenoid sinus, sarcoma of the maxillary sinus and middle fossa, and osteoma of the frontal sinus. The mean length of stay was 24.5 days (range 7 to 45 days). Cushing employed craniofacial approaches for malignant pathology nearly 40 years before such techniques became widely used. He practiced the fundamentals of skull base surgery, including preferential removal of bone to achieving adequate exposure for resection. In addition, Cushing clearly understood the importance of proximal vascular control in approaching lesions with complex vascular involvement.
PMCID: PMC3312120  PMID: 22470263
Harvey Cushing; skull base; transfacial; neuro-oncology
25.  Craniofacial Resection for Sinonasal Malignant Tumors: Statistical Analysis of Surgical Outcome over 17 Years at a Single Institution 
Skull Base  2011;21(4):243-248.
We present a retrospective analysis of surgical outcome of sinonasal malignant tumors. Overall survival (OS), disease-specific survival (DSS), local control (LC), and disease-free survival (DFS) were calculated in 32 patients. Prognostic factors for survival and functional outcomes were investigated. The median follow-up period was 70 months. At 5 years, OS, DSS, LC, and DFS rates were 0.722, 0.745, 0.851, and 0.707, respectively. Prognostic factors for poor OS were involvement of the frontal sinus (p = 0.023), T classification (T4, p = 0.025), surgical complications (p = 0.029), chemotherapy (p = 0.035) postsurgical infection (p = 0.043), involvement of the orbit (p = 0.048), histology (squamous cell carcinoma, p = 0.049), and radiotherapy (p = 0.043). Prognostic factors for poor DSS were radiotherapy (p = 0.030), chemotherapy (p = 0.036), positive surgical margin (p = 0.034), and T classification (T4, p = 0.050). LC was adversely influenced by surgical procedure (combined frontotemporal resection, p = 0.035) and positive surgical margin (p = 0.049). DFS was adversely influenced by positive surgical margin (p = 0.001). Prognostic factors for poor functional outcome were postsurgical infection (p = 0.039), postsurgical complications (p = 0.040), tumor location (maxillary sinus, p = 0.042, orbit, p = 0.0002), number of sinuses involved (number of sinuses involved was inversely proportional to functional outcome, p = 0.027), T classification (T4 p = 0.007), pathology (squamous cell carcinoma, p = 0.023), and chemotherapy (p = 0.048). Craniofacial resection was an effective surgical option.
PMCID: PMC3312121  PMID: 22470267
Sinonasal malignant tumor; craniofacial resection; survival outcome; functional outcome; statistical analysis

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