Neurosurgery Blog

Icon

Daily bibliographic review of the Neurosurgery Department. La Fe University Hospital. Valencia, Spain

Cystic Vestibular Schwannomas Respond Best to Radiosurgery

Neurosurgery 81:490–497, 2017

Vestibular schwannomas (VS) have a well-documented response to Gamma Knife R  (Elekta AB, Stockholm, Sweden) Stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS). However, there are limited data available regarding the volumetric response of cystic tumors.

OBJECTIVE: This report correlates the radiographic appearance of VS before radiosurgery with the delayed volumetric response.

METHODS: This study reviewed our SRS experience with 219 VS patients between 2003 and 2013. Patients were treatment naïve and had a significant extracanalicular tumor volume. Magnetic resonance imaging at the time of SRS identified 42 contrast-enhancing macrocystic tumors, 45 contrast-enhancing microcystic tumors, and 132 homogeneously enhancing tumors with no intratumoral cyst formation. The median follow-up was 49.1 months. The median tumor volume was 2.6 cm3 (0.70-16.1 cm3) and the median dose was 12.5 Gy (11-13 Gy).

RESULTS: The actuarial tumor control rate was 99.4% at 2 years and 96.4% at 5 years. A volumetric reduction of >20% occurred in 85.4% of macrocystic tumors, 76.1% of microcystic tumors, and 62.8% of homogeneously enhancing VS. The median volume decrease per year for macrocystic, microcystic, and homogenous tumors was 17.2%, 7.5%, and 7.9% per year respectively (P < .001). A 2:1 blinded volumetric case match showed a significant size reduction in macrocystic tumors compared to noncystic tumors (P = .007). Serviceable hearing was maintained in 61.5% of patients that had Gardner-Robertson grade I-II hearing before treatment. Surgical resection or repeat radiosurgery was performed in 8 patients (3.6%) who had sustained tumor progression.

CONCLUSION: SRS provided VS tumor control in >95% of patients, regardless of radiographic characteristics. Tumor volume regression was most evident in patients with cystic tumors.

Preserving normal facial nerve function and improving hearing outcome in large vestibular schwannomas with a combined approach

Acta Neurochir (2017) 159:1197–1211

To perform planned subtotal resection followed by gamma knife surgery (GKRS) in a series of patients with large vestibular schwannoma (VS), aiming at an optimal functional outcome for facial and cochlear nerves.

Methods Patient characteristics, surgical and dosimetric features, and outcome were collected prospectively at the time of treatment and during the follow-up.

Results A consecutive series of 32 patients was treated between July 2010 and June 2016. Mean follow-up after surgery was 29 months (median 24, range 4–78). Mean presurgical tumor volume was 12.5 cm3 (range 1.47–34.9). Postoperative status showed normal facial nerve function (House– Brackmann I) in all patients. In a subgroup of 17 patients with serviceable hearing before surgery and in which cochlear nerve preservation was attempted at surgery, 16 (94.1%) retained serviceable hearing. Among them, 13 had normal hearing (Gardner–Robertson class 1) before surgery, and 10 (76.9%) retained normal hearing after surgery. Mean duration between surgery and GKRS was 6.3 months (range 3.8–13.9). Mean tumor volume at GKRS was 3.5 cm3 (range 0.5–12.8), corresponding to mean residual volume of 29.4% (range 6– 46.7) of the preoperative volume. Mean marginal dose was 12 Gy (range 11–12). Mean follow-up after GKRS was 24 months (range 3–60). Following GKRS, there were no new neurological deficits, with facial and hearing functions remaining identical to those after surgery in all patients. Three patients presented with continuous growth after GKRS, were considered failures, and benefited from the same combined approach a second time.

Conclusion Our data suggest that large VS management, with planned subtotal resection followed by GKRS, might yield an excellent clinical outcome, allowing the normal facial nerve and a high level of cochlear nerve functions to be retained. Our functional results with this approach in large VS are comparable with those obtained with GKRS alone in small- and medium-sized VS. Longer term follow-up is necessary to fully evaluate this approach, especially regarding tumor control.

 

Control of vestibular schwannomas treated with Gamma Knife

vestibular-schwannoma

J Neurosurg 124:1619–1626, 2016

The authors of this study sought to assess tumor control and complication rates in a large cohort of patients who underwent Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) for vestibular schwannoma (VS) and to identify predictors of tumor control. Methods The records of 420 patients treated with GKRS for VS with a median marginal dose of 11 Gy were retrospectively analyzed. Patients with neurofibromatosis Type 2 or who had undergone treatment for VS previously were excluded. The authors assessed tumor control and complication rates with chart review and used the Cox proportional hazards model to identify predictors of tumor control. Preservation of serviceable hearing, defined as Gardner-Robertson Class I–II, was evaluated in a subgroup of 71 patients with serviceable hearing at baseline and with available followup audiograms.

Results The median VS tumor volume was 1.4 cm3, and the median length of follow-up was 5.1 years. Actuarial 5- and 10-year tumor control rates were 91.3% and 84.8%, respectively. Only tumor volume was a statistically significant predictor of tumor control rate. The tumor control rate decreased from 94.1% for tumors smaller than 0.5 cm3 to 80.7% for tumors larger than 6 cm3. Thirteen patients (3.1%) had new or increased permanent trigeminal nerve neuropathy, 4 (1.0%) had new or increased permanent facial weakness, and 5 (1.2%) exhibited new or increased hydrocephalus requiring a shunting procedure. Actuarial 3-year and 5-year hearing preservation rates were 65% and 42%, respectively.

Conclusions The 5-year actuarial tumor control rate of 91.3% in this cohort of patients with VS compared slightly unfavorably with the rates reported in other large studies, but the complication and hearing preservation rates in this study were similar to those reported previously. Various factors may contribute to the observed differences in reported outcomes. These factors include variations in treatment indication and in the definition of treatment failure, as well as a lack of standardization of terminology and of evaluation of complications. Last, differences in dosimetric variables may also be an explanatory factor.

Delayed Facial Palsy After Vestibular Schwannoma Resection

vestibular-schwannoma

Neurosurgery 78:251–255, 2016

Preservation of facial nerve function following vestibular schwannoma surgery is a high priority. Even those patients with normal to near-normal function in the early postoperative period remain at risk for delayed facial palsy (DFP).

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the incidence and prognosis of DFP and to identify risk factors for its occurrence.

METHODS: A retrospective cohort study of 489 patients who underwent vestibular schwannoma resection at our institution between 2000 and 2014. Delayed facial palsy was defined as deterioration in facial function of at least 2 House-Brackmann (HB) grades between postoperative days 5 to 30. Only patients with a HB grade of I to III by postoperative day 5 were eligible for study inclusion.

RESULTS: One hundred twenty-one patients with HB grade IV to VI facial weakness at postoperative day 5 were excluded from analysis. Of the remaining 368, 60 (16%) patients developed DFP (mean 12 days postoperatively, range: 5-25 days). All patients recovered function to HB grade I to II by a mean of 33 days (range: 7-86 days). Patients that developed DFP had higher rates of gross total resections (83% vs 71%, P = .05) and retrosigmoid approaches (72% vs 52%, P, .01). There was no difference in recovery time between patients who received treatment with steroids, steroids with antivirals, or no treatment at all (P = .530).

CONCLUSION: Patients with a gross total tumor resection or undergoing a retrosigmoid approach may be at higher risk of DFP. The prognosis is favorable, with patients likely recovering to normal or near-normal facial function within 1 month of onset.

Combined use of diffusion tensor tractography and multifused contrast-enhanced FIESTA for predicting facial and cochlear nerve positions in relation to vestibular schwannoma

Combined use of diffusion tensor tractography and multifused contrast-enhanced FIESTA for predicting facial and cochlear nerve positions in relation to vestibular schwannoma

J Neurosurg 123:1480–1488, 2015

The authors assessed whether the combined use of diffusion tensor tractography (DTT) and contrastenhanced (CE) fast imaging employing steady-state acquisition (FIESTA) could improve the accuracy of predicting the courses of the facial and cochlear nerves before surgery.

Methods The population was composed of 22 patients with vestibular schwannoma in whom both the facial and cochlear nerves could be identified during surgery. According to DTT, depicted fibers running from the internal auditory canal to the brainstem were judged to represent the facial or vestibulocochlear nerve. With regard to imaging, the authors investigated multifused CE-FIESTA scans, in which all 3D vessel models were shown simultaneously, from various angles. The low-intensity areas running along the tumor from brainstem to the internal auditory canal were judged to represent the facial or vestibulocochlear nerve.

Results For all 22 patients, the rate of fibers depicted by DTT coinciding with the facial nerve was 13.6% (3/22), and that of fibers depicted by DTT coinciding with the cochlear nerve was 63.6% (14/22). The rate of candidates for nerves predicted by multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with the facial nerve was 59.1% (13/22), and that of candidates for nerves predicted by multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with the cochlear nerve was 4.5% (1/22). The rate of candidates for nerves predicted by combined DTT and multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with the facial nerve was 63.6% (14/22), and that of candidates for nerves predicted by combined DTT and multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with the cochlear nerve was 63.6% (14/22). The rate of candidates predicted by DTT coinciding with both facial and cochlear nerves was 0.0% (0/22), that of candidates predicted by multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with both facial and cochlear nerves was 4.5% (1/22), and that of candidates predicted by combined DTT and multifused CE-FIESTA coinciding with both the facial and cochlear nerves was 45.5% (10/22).

Conclusions By using a combination of DTT and multifused CE-FIESTA, the authors were able to increase the number of vestibular schwannoma patients for whom predicted results corresponded with the courses of both the facial and cochlear nerves, a result that has been considered difficult to achieve by use of a single modality only. Although the 3D image including these prediction results helped with comprehension of the 3D operative anatomy, the reliability of prediction remains to be established.

Prognostic Significance of Peritumoral Edema in Patients With Vestibular Schwannomas

Prognostic Significance of Peritumoral Edema in Patients With Vestibular Schwannomas

Neurosurgery 77:81–86, 2015

Peritumoral edema (PTE) in skull base meningiomas correlates to the absence of an arachnoid plane and difference in outcome. In vestibular schwannomas (VS), PTE and its significance for microsurgery and outcome have never been systematically evaluated.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether PTE correlates with tumor characteristics, the presence of an arachnoid plane, and outcome.

METHODS: A retrospective study of the institutional database. PTE was evaluated on fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance images. Preoperative patient data and intraoperative tumor features (presence of tumor pseudocapsule, vascularity, degree of adhesion/invasion of the arachnoid) were noted. Outcome measures were completeness of removal, neurological outcome, and complication rate. These parameters in patients with PTE (group A) were correlated to those in matched series without edema (group B).

RESULTS: Thirty patients presented with PTE (5%). The mean VS size was 3.4 cm. No major differences in the degree of adhesion or presence of an arachnoid plane were found. VS with PTE were more frequently hypervascular (26.7% in group A vs 6.7% in group B). The presence of PTE in VS was not related to surgical radicality. VS with PTE had worse early postoperative facial nerve function, but at 12 months, there was no major difference. VS with PTE were prone to cause postoperative hemorrhages in the tumor bed.

CONCLUSION: PTE in VS does not correlate with the degree of tumor adhesion and the presence of an arachnoid dissection plane. The radicality of tumor removal and longterm functional outcome in patients with and without PTE was similar. VS with PTE are more vascular and prone to cause postoperative hemorrhages. Therefore, meticulous hemostasis is advisable.

Hearing preservation surgery for vestibular schwannomas via the retrosigmoid transmeatal approach

Hearing preservation surgery in VS-1

Neurosurg Rev (2014) 37:431–444

Maximum tumor extirpation with preservation of the facial and cochlear nerve function is the goal of surgery for vestibular schwannoma. To preserve cochlear nerve function, the surgeon must employ a detailed knowledge of microanatomy, precise microsurgical techniques, and persistence. This paper describes the “pearls” of surgical techniques based on the anatomical study inside the mastoid from the view of the retrosigmoid transmeatal approach.

A total of 592 consecutive patients underwent surgical removal of unilateral vestibular schwannoma (VS) between January 1994 and December 2009. The hearing preservation rate was 53.7 % for large vestibular schwannomas (>20 mm in diameter) and 74.1 % for tumors of all sizes.

The key procedures for hearing preservation surgery are as follows: bloodless microdissection, sufficient coring-debulking, capsular elevation to locate the facial and cochlear nerves both electrophysiologically and by visual observation, sharp dissection of the facial and cochlear nerves, and avoidance of heat and mechanical injury to the nerves, the internal auditory artery, and the brain stem. Besides these techniques, appropriate instruments are essential to preserve hearing.

The function of the facial and cochlear nerves should be the foremost concern. Meticulous techniques and the knowledge of microsurgical anatomy lead to hearing preservation with maximum tumor removal.

 

The behavior of residual tumors and facial nerve outcomes after incomplete excision of vestibular schwannomas

 incomplete excision of vestibular schwannomas

J Neurosurg 120:1278–1287, 2014

The authors evaluated the behavior of residual tumors and facial nerve outcomes after incomplete excision of vestibular schwannomas (VSs).

Methods. The case records of all patients who underwent surgical treatment of VSs were analyzed. All patients in whom an incomplete excision had been performed were analyzed. Incomplete excision was defined as near-total resection (NTR), subtotal resection (STR), and partial resection (PR). Tumors in the NTR and STR categories were followed up with a wait-and-rescan approach, whereas the tumors in the PR category were subjected to a second- stage surgery and were excluded from this series. All patients included in the study underwent baseline MRI at the 3rd and 12th postoperative months, and repeat imaging was subsequently performed every year for 7–10 years postoperatively or as indicated clinically. Preoperative and postoperative facial function was noted.

Results. Of the 2368 patients who underwent surgery for VS, 111 patients who had incomplete excisions of VSs were included in the study. Of these patients, 73 (65.77%) had undergone NTR and 38 (34.23%) had undergone STR. Of the VSs, 62 (55.86%) were cystic and 44 (70.97%) of these cystic VSs underwent NTR. The residual tumor was left behind on the facial nerve alone in 62 patients (55.86%), on the facial nerve and vessels in 2 patients (1.80%), on the facial nerve and brainstem in 15 patients (13.51%), and on the brainstem alone in 25 patients (22.52%). In the 105 patients with normal preoperative facial nerve function, postoperative facial nerve function was House-Brackmann (HB) Grades I and II in 51 patients (48.57%), HB Grade III in 34 patients (32.38%), and HB Grades IV–VI in 20 pa- tients (19.05%). Seven patients (6.3%) showed evidence of tumor regrowth on follow-up MRI. All 7 patients (100%) who showed evidence of tumor regrowth had undergone STR. No patient in the NTR group exhibited regrowth. The Kaplan-Meier plot demonstrated a 5-year tumor regrowth-free survival of 92%, with a mean disease-free interval of 140 months (95% CI 127–151 months). The follow-up period ranged from 12 to 156 months (mean 45.4 months).

Conclusions. The authors’ report and review of the literature show that there is undoubtedly merit for NTR and STR for preservation of the facial nerve. On the basis of this they propose an algorithm for the management of incomplete VS excisions. Patients who undergo incomplete excisions must be subjected to follow-up MRI for a period of at least 7–10 years. When compared with STR, NTR via an enlarged translabyrinthine approach has shown to have a lower rate of regrowth of residual tumor, while having almost the same result in terms of facial nerve function.

 

 

Medial acoustic neuromas: clinical and surgical implications

Medial VIII schwannoma

J Neurosurg 120:1095–1104, 2014

Medial acoustic neuroma is a rare entity that confers a distinct clinical syndrome. It is scarcely discussed in the literature and is associated with adverse features. This study evaluates the clinical and imaging features, pertinent surgical challenges, and treatment outcome in a large series of this variant. The authors postulate that the particular pathological anatomy with its arachnoidal rearrangement has a profound implication on the surgical technique and outcome.

Methods. The authors conducted a retrospective analysis of 52 cases involving 33 women and 19 men who underwent resection of medial acoustic neuromas performed by the senior author (O.A.) over a 20-year period (1993– 2013). Clinical, radiological, and operative records were reviewed, with a specific focus on the neurological outcomes and facial nerve function and hearing preservation. Intraoperative findings were analyzed with respect to the effect of arachnoidal arrangement on the surgeon’s ability to resect the lesion and the impact on postoperative function.

Results. The average tumor size was 34.5 mm (maximum diameter), with over 90% of tumors being 25 mm or larger and 71% being cystic. Cerebellar, trigeminal nerve, and facial nerve dysfunction were common preoperative findings. Hydrocephalus was present in 11 patients. Distinguishing intraoperative findings included marked tumor adherence to the brainstem and frequent hypervascularity, which prompted intracapsular dissection resulting in enhancement on postoperative MRI in 18 cases, with only 3 demonstrating growth on follow-up. There was no mortality or major postoperative neurological deficit. Cerebrospinal fluid leak was encountered in 7 patients, with 4 requiring surgical repair. Among 45 patients who had intact preoperative facial function, only 1 had permanent facial nerve paralysis on extended follow-up. Of the patients with preoperative Grade I–II facial function, 87% continued to have Grade I–II function on follow-up. Of 10 patients who had Class A hearing preoperatively, 5 continued to have Class A or B hearing after surgery.

Conclusions. Medial acoustic neuromas represent a rare subgroup whose site of origin and growth patterns produce a distinct clinical presentation and present specific operative challenges. They reach giant size and are frequently cystic and hypervascular. Their origin and growth pattern lead to arachnoidal rearrangement with marked adherence against the brainstem, which is critical in the surgical management. Excellent surgical outcome is achievable with a high rate of facial nerve function and attainable hearing preservation. These results suggest that similar or better results may be achieved in less complex tumors.

Contemporary Surgical Management of Vestibular Schwannomas

Vestibular-schwannoma

Neurosurgery 72[ONS Suppl 2]:ons103–ons115, 2013 

Despite advanced microsurgical techniques, more refined instrumentation, and expert team management, there is still a significant incidence of complications in vestibular schwannoma surgery.

OBJECTIVE: To analyze complications from the microsurgical treatment of vestibular schwannoma by an expert surgical team and to propose strategies for minimizing such complications.

METHODS: Surgical outcomes and complications were evaluated in a consecutive series of 410 unilateral vestibular schwannomas treated from 2000 to 2009. Clinical status and complications were assessed postoperatively (within 7 days) and at the time of follow-up (range, 1-116 months; mean, 32.7 months).

RESULTS: Follow-up data were available for 357 of the 410 patients (87.1%). Microsurgical tumor resection was performed through a retrosigmoid approach in 70.7% of cases. Thirty-three patients (8%) had intrameatal tumors and 204 (49.8%) had tumors that were ,20 mm. Gross total resection was performed in 306 patients (74.6%). Hearing preservation surgery was attempted in 170 patients with tumors ,20 mm, and good hearing was preserved in 74.1%. The main neurological complication was facial palsy (House-Brackmann grade III-VI), observed in 14% of patients (56 cases) postoperatively; however, 59% of them improved during the follow-up period. Other neurological complications were disequilibrium in 6.3%, facial numbness in 2.2%, and lower cranial nerve deficit in 0.5%. Nonneurological complications included cerebrospinal fluid leaks in 7.6%, wound infection in 2.2%, and meningitis in 1.7%.

CONCLUSION: Many of these complications are avoidable through further refinement of operative technique, and strategies for avoiding complications are proposed.

Dorsal location of the cochlear nerve on vestibular schwannoma: preoperative evaluation, frequency, and functional outcome

Dorsal location of the cochlear nerve on vestibular schwannoma

Neurosurg Rev (2013) 36:39–44

The cochlear nerve is most commonly located on the caudoventral portion of the capsule of vestibular schwannomas and rarely on the dorsal portion. In such a condition, total removal of the tumor without cochlear nerve dysfunction is extremely difficult.

The purpose of our study was to identify the frequency of this anatomical condition and the status of postoperative cochlear nerve function; we also discuss the preoperative radiological findings.

The study involved 114 patients with unilateral vestibular schwannomas operated on via a retrosigmoid (lateral suboccipital) approach. Locations of the cochlear nerve on the tumor capsule were ventral, dorsal, caudal, and rostral. Ventral and dorsal locations were further subdivided into rostral, middle, and caudal third of the tumor capsule. The postoperative cochlear nerve function and preoperative magnetic resonance (MR) findings were reviewed retrospectively.

In 56 patients that had useful preoperative hearing, useful hearing was retained in 50.0 % (28 of 56) of patients after surgery. The cochlear nerve was located on the dorsal portion of the tumor capsule in four patients (3.5 %), and useful hearing was preserved in only one of these patients (25 %) in whom the tumor had been partially resected.

This tumor-nerve anatomical relationship was identified in all tumors of <2 cm at preoperative MR cisternography. MR cisternography has the potential to identify the tumor–nerve anatomical relationship, especially in small-sized tumors that usually require therapeutic intervention that ensures hearing preservation. Hence, careful evaluation of the preoperative MR cisternography is important in deciding the therapeutic indications.

Surgery for vestibular schwannomas: a systematic review of complications by approach

Neurosurg Focus 33 (3):E14, 2012

Various studies report outcomes of vestibular schwannoma (VS) surgery, but few studies have compared outcomes across the various approaches. The authors conducted a systematic review of the available data on VS surgery, comparing the different approaches and their associated complications.

Methods. MEDLINE searches were conducted to collect studies that reported information on patients undergoing VS surgery. The authors set inclusion criteria for such studies, including the availability of follow-up data for at least 3 months, inclusion of preoperative and postoperative audiometric data, intraoperative monitoring, and reporting of results using established and standardized metrics. Data were collected on hearing loss, facial nerve dysfunction, persistent postoperative headache, CSF leak, operative mortality, residual tumor, tumor recurrence, cranial nerve (CN) dysfunction involving nerves other than CN VII or VIII, and other neurological complications. The authors reviewed data from 35 studies pertaining to 5064 patients who had undergone VS surgery.

Results. The analyses for hearing loss and facial nerve dysfunction were stratified into the following tumor categories: intracanalicular (IC), size (extrameatal diameter) < 1.5 cm, size 1.5–3.0 cm, and size > 3.0 cm. The middle cranial fossa approach was found to be superior to the retrosigmoid approach for hearing preservation in patients with tumors < 1.5 cm (hearing loss in 43.6% vs 64.3%, p < 0.001). All other size categories showed no significant difference between middle cranial fossa and retrosigmoid approaches with respect to hearing loss. The retrosigmoid approach was associated with significantly less facial nerve dysfunction in patients with IC tumors than the middle cranial fossa method was; however, neither differed significantly from the translabyrinthine corridor (4%, 16.7%, 0%, respectively, p < 0.001). The middle cranial fossa approach differed significantly from the translabyrinthine approach for patients with tumors < 1.5 cm, whereas neither differed from the retrosigmoid approach (3.3%, 11.5%, and 7.2%, respectively, p = 0.001). The retrosigmoid approach involved less facial nerve dysfunction than the middle cranial fossa or translabyrinthine approaches for tumors 1.5–3.0 cm (6.1%, 17.3%, and 15.8%, respectively; p < 0.001). The retrosigmoid approach was also superior to the translabyrinthine approach for tumors > 3.0 cm (30.2% vs 42.5%, respectively, p < 0.001). Postoperative headache was significantly more likely after the retrosigmoid approach than after the translabyrinthine approach, but neither differed significantly from the middle cranial fossa approach (17.3%, 0%, and 8%, respectively; p < 0.001). The incidence of CSF leak was significantly greater after the retrosigmoid approach than after either the middle cranial fossa or translabyrinthine approaches (10.3%, 5.3%, 7.1%; p = 0.001). The incidences of residual tumor, mortality, major non-CN complications, residual tumor, tumor recurrence, and dysfunction of other cranial nerves were not significantly different across the approaches.

Conclusions. The middle cranial fossa approach seems safest for hearing preservation in patients with smaller tumors. Based on the data, the retrosigmoid approach seems to be the most versatile corridor for facial nerve preservation for most tumor sizes, but it is associated with a higher risk of postoperative pain and CSF fistula. The translabyrinthine approach is associated with complete hearing loss but may be useful for patients with large tumors and poor preoperative hearing.

Technical nuances of resection of giant (> 5 cm) vestibular schwannomas: pearls for success

Neurosurg Focus 33 (3):E15, 2012

Removal of vestibular schwannomas (VSs, or acoustic neuromas) remains one of the most challenging operations in neurosurgery. Giant or huge tumors (> 5 cm) heighten these challenges, and technical nuances play a special role in maximizing tumor resection while minimizing complications.

In this article, the senior author describes his technical experience with microsurgical excision of giant VSs. The accompanying video further illustrates these details.

 

Surgery for vestibular schwannomas: a systematic review of complications by approach

Neurosurg Focus 33 (3):E14, 2012

Various studies report outcomes of vestibular schwannoma (VS) surgery, but few studies have compared outcomes across the various approaches. The authors conducted a systematic review of the available data on VS surgery, comparing the different approaches and their associated complications.

Methods. MEDLINE searches were conducted to collect studies that reported information on patients undergoing VS surgery. The authors set inclusion criteria for such studies, including the availability of follow-up data for at least 3 months, inclusion of preoperative and postoperative audiometric data, intraoperative monitoring, and reporting of results using established and standardized metrics. Data were collected on hearing loss, facial nerve dysfunction, persistent postoperative headache, CSF leak, operative mortality, residual tumor, tumor recurrence, cranial nerve (CN) dysfunction involving nerves other than CN VII or VIII, and other neurological complications. The authors reviewed data from 35 studies pertaining to 5064 patients who had undergone VS surgery.

Results. The analyses for hearing loss and facial nerve dysfunction were stratified into the following tumor categories: intracanalicular (IC), size (extrameatal diameter) < 1.5 cm, size 1.5–3.0 cm, and size > 3.0 cm. The middle cranial fossa approach was found to be superior to the retrosigmoid approach for hearing preservation in patients with tumors < 1.5 cm (hearing loss in 43.6% vs 64.3%, p < 0.001). All other size categories showed no significant difference between middle cranial fossa and retrosigmoid approaches with respect to hearing loss. The retrosigmoid approach was associated with significantly less facial nerve dysfunction in patients with IC tumors than the middle cranial fossa method was; however, neither differed significantly from the translabyrinthine corridor (4%, 16.7%, 0%, respectively, p < 0.001). The middle cranial fossa approach differed significantly from the translabyrinthine approach for patients with tumors < 1.5 cm, whereas neither differed from the retrosigmoid approach (3.3%, 11.5%, and 7.2%, respectively, p = 0.001). The retrosigmoid approach involved less facial nerve dysfunction than the middle cranial fossa or translabyrinthine approaches for tumors 1.5–3.0 cm (6.1%, 17.3%, and 15.8%, respectively; p < 0.001). The retrosigmoid approach was also superior to the translabyrinthine approach for tumors > 3.0 cm (30.2% vs 42.5%, respectively, p < 0.001). Postoperative headache was significantly more likely after the retrosigmoid approach than after the translabyrinthine approach, but neither differed significantly from the middle cranial fossa approach (17.3%, 0%, and 8%, respectively; p < 0.001). The incidence of CSF leak was significantly greater after the retrosigmoid approach than after either the middle cranial fossa or translabyrinthine approaches (10.3%, 5.3%, 7.1%; p = 0.001). The incidences of residual tumor, mortality, major non-CN complications, residual tumor, tumor recurrence, and dysfunction of other cranial nerves were not significantly different across the approaches.

Conclusions. The middle cranial fossa approach seems safest for hearing preservation in patients with smaller tumors. Based on the data, the retrosigmoid approach seems to be the most versatile corridor for facial nerve preservation for most tumor sizes, but it is associated with a higher risk of postoperative pain and CSF fistula. The translabyrinthine approach is associated with complete hearing loss but may be useful for patients with large tumors and poor preoperative hearing.

Staged resection of large vestibular schwannomas

J Neurosurg 116:1126–1133, 2012.(http://thejns.org/doi/abs/10.3171/2012.1.JNS111402)

Staged resection of large vestibular schwannomas (VSs) has been proposed as a strategy to improve facial nerve outcomes and morbidity. The authors report their experience with 2-stage resections of large VSs and analyze the indications, facial nerve outcomes, surgical results, and complications. The authors compare these results with those of a similar cohort of patients who underwent a single-stage resection.

Methods. A retrospective review of all patients (age > 18 years) who underwent surgery from 2002 to 2010 for large (≥ 3 cm) VSs at the authors’ institution with a minimum of 6 months follow-up was undertaken. A first-stage retrosigmoid approach (without meatal drilling) was performed to remove the cerebellopontine angle portion of the tumor and to decompress the brainstem. A decision to stage the operation was made intraoperatively if there was cerebellar or brainstem edema, excessive tumor adherence to the facial nerve or brainstem, a poorly stimulating facial nerve, or a thinned or splayed facial nerve. A second-stage translabyrinthine approach was performed at a later date to remove the remaining tumor. The single-stage resection consisted of a retrosigmoid approach with meatal drilling. Patient charts were evaluated for tumor size, extent of resection, tumor recurrence, House-Brackmann facial nerve function grade, and complications.

Results. Twenty-eight and 19 patients underwent 2- or single-stage resection of a large VS, respectively. The average tumor size was 3.9 cm (range 3.2–7 cm) in the 2-stage group and 3.9 cm (range 3.1–5 cm) in the single-stage group. The mean follow-up was 36 ± 19 months in the 2-stage group versus 24 ± 14 months in the single-stage group. Gross-total or near-total resection was achieved in 27 (96.4%) of 28 patients in the 2-stage group and 15 (79%) of 19 patients in the single-stage group (p < 0.01). Anatomical facial nerve preservation was achieved in all but 1 patient (94.7%), and there were no recurrences on follow-up imaging in the 2-stage group. Good facial nerve functional outcome (House-Brackmann Grades I and II) at last follow-up was achieved in 23 (82%) of 28 patients in the 2-stage group and 10 (53%) of 19 patients in the single-stage group (p < 0.01). Cerebrospinal fluid leak–related complications (intracranial hypotension, blood patch, and lumboperitoneal shunt for pseudomeningocele) were more common in the 2-stage group. There were no postoperative strokes, hemorrhages, or deaths in either group.

Conclusions. The authors’ results suggest that staged resection of large VSs may potentially achieve better facial nerve outcomes. There does not appear to be added neurological morbidity with staged resections

Preoperative identification of the facial nerve in patients with large cerebellopontine angle tumors using high-density diffusion tensor imaging


 

J Neurosurg 116:697–702, 2012. http://thejns.org/doi/abs/10.3171/2011.12.JNS111404

Facial nerve paresis can be a devastating complication following resection of large (> 2.5 cm) cerebellopontine angle (CPA) tumors. The authors have developed and used a new high-density diffusion tensor imaging (HD-DT imaging) method, aimed at preoperatively identifying the location and course of the facial nerve in relation to large CPA tumors. Their study objective was to preoperatively identify the facial nerve in patients with large CPA tumors and compare their HD-DT imaging method with a traditional standard DT imaging method and correlate with intraoperative findings.

Methods. The authors prospectively studied 5 patients with large (> 2.5 cm) CPA tumors. All patients underwent preoperative traditional standard- and HD-DT imaging. Imaging results were correlated with intraoperative findings.

Results. Utilizing their HD-DT imaging method, the authors positively identified the location and course of the facial nerve in all patients. In contrast, using a standard DT imaging method, the authors were unable to identify the facial nerve in 4 of the 5 patients.

Conclusions. The HD-DT imaging method that the authors describe and use has proven to be a powerful, accurate, and rapid method for preoperatively identifying the facial nerve in relation to large CPA tumors. Routine integration of HD-DT imaging in preoperative planning for CPA tumor resection could lead to improved facial nerve preservation.

Diffusion tensor imaging–based fiber tracking for prediction of the position of the facial nerve in relation to large vestibular schwannomas

J Neurosurg 115:1087–1093, 2011. DOI: 10.3171/2011.7.JNS11495

The reliable preoperative visualization of facial nerve location in relation to vestibular schwannoma (VS) would allow surgeons to plan tumor removal accordingly and may increase the safety of surgery. In this prospective study, the authors attempted to validate the reliability of facial nerve diffusion tensor (DT) imaging–based fiber tracking in a series of patients with large VSs. Furthermore, the authors evaluated the potential of this visualization technique to predict the morphological shape of the facial nerve (tumor compression–related flattening of the nerve).

Methods. Diffusion tensor imaging and anatomical images (constructive interference in steady state) were acquired in a series of 22 consecutive patients with large VSs and postprocessed with navigational software to obtain facial nerve fiber tracking. The location of the cerebellopontine angle (CPA) part of the nerve in relation to the tumor was recorded during surgery by the surgeon, who was blinded to the results of the fiber tracking. A correlative analysis was performed of the imaging-based location of the nerve compared with its in situ position in relation to the VS.

Results. Fibers corresponding to the anatomical location and course of the facial nerve from the brainstem to the internal auditory meatus were identified with the DT imaging–based fiber tracking technique in all 22 cases. The location of the CPA segment of the facial nerve in relation to the VS determined during surgery corresponded to the location of the fibers, predicted by the DT imaging–based fiber tracking, in 20 (90.9%) of the 22 patients. No DT imaging–based fiber tracking correlates were found with the 2 morphological types of the nerve (compact or flat).

Conclusions. The current study of patients with large VSs has shown that the position of the facial nerve in relation to the tumor can be predicted reliably (in 91%) using DT imaging–based fiber tracking. These are preliminary results that need further verification in a larger series.

The molecular biology and novel treatments of vestibular schwannomas

J Neurosurg 115:906–914, 2011. DOI: 10.3171/2011.6.JNS11131

Vestibular schwannomas are histopathologically benign tumors arising from the Schwann cell sheath surrounding the vestibular branch of cranial nerve VIII and are related to the NF2 gene and its product merlin.

Merlin acts as a tumor suppressor and as a mediator of contact inhibition. Thus, deficiencies in both NF2 genes lead to vestibular schwannoma development.

Recently, there have been major advances in our knowledge of the molecular biology of vestibular schwannomas as well as the development of novel therapies for its treatment.

In this article the authors comprehensively review the recent advances in the molecular biology and characterization of vestibular schwannomas as well as the development of modern treatments for vestibular schwannoma. For instance, merlin is involved with a number of receptors including the CD44 receptor, EGFR, and signaling pathways, such as the Ras/raf pathway and the canonical Wnt pathway. Recently, merlin was also shown to interact in the nucleus with E3 ubiquitin ligase CRL4DCAF1.

A greater understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind vestibular schwannoma tumorigenesis has begun to yield novel therapies. Some authors have shown that Avastin induces regression of progressive schwannomas by over 40% and improves hearing. An inhibitor of VEGF synthesis, PTC299, is currently in Phase II trials as a potential agent to treat vestibular schwannoma.

Furthermore, in vitro studies have shown that trastuzumab (an ERBB2 inhibitor) reduces vestibular schwannoma cell proliferation.

With further research it may be possible to significantly reduce morbidity and mortality rates by decreasing tumor burden, tumor volume, hearing loss, and cranial nerve deficits seen in vestibular schwannomas.

Tumor origin and hearing preservation in vestibular schwannoma surgery

J Neurosurg 115:900–905, 2011. DOI: 10.3171/2011.7.JNS102092

Preservation of cochlear nerve function in vestibular schwannoma (VS) removal is usually dependent on tumor size and preoperative hearing status. Tumor origin as an independent factor has not been systematically investigated.

Methods. A series of 90 patients with VSs, who underwent surgery via a suboccipitolateral route, was evaluated with respect to cochlear nerve function, tumor size, radiological findings, and intraoperatively confirmed tumor origin. All patients were reevaluated 12 months after surgery.

Results. Despite comparable preoperative cochlear nerve status and larger tumor sizes, hearing preservation was achieved in 42% of patients with tumor originating from the superior vestibular nerve, compared with 16% of those with tumor originating from the inferior vestibular nerve.

Conclusions. Tumor origin is an important prognostic factor for cochlear nerve preservation in VS surgery.

Dural Landmark to Locate the Internal Auditory Canal in Large and Giant Vestibular Schwannomas: The Tübingen Line

Neurosurgery 69[ONS Suppl 1]:ons99–ons102, 2011.  DOI: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e31821664c6

In cases of large and giant vestibular schwannomas (VS), the visualization of the internal auditory canal (IAC) opening is difficult or impossible.

OBJECTIVE: To describe the Tübingen line and explore its relationships with the IAC as a landmark to help locate the IAC.

METHODS: Ten cadaveric heads were used in this study. Between 2004 and 2009, the senior author (M.T.) used the Tübingen line as a landmark to recognize the IAC in 300 consecutive patients with VS. To locate the Tübingen  line, the initial step was to identify several vertical foldings of dura located around the area of the vestibular aqueduct. After this, foldings upward consistently reached a linear level where all of the foldings ended and the dura tightly adhered to the bony surface in a smooth, foldless shape.

RESULTS: The Tübingen line was identified in all temporal bones studied and in all 300 patients operated on, with the exception of 2 cases (,1%). Removal of the bone just above the Tübingen line located the IAC in all temporal bone specimens studied. Similarly, the surgical cases showed that the Tübingen line helped locate the IAC in all patients.

CONCLUSION: The Tübingen line is an easy, consistent, and safe method to locate the projection of the IAC along the posterior surface of the temporal bone.

Neurosurgery Department. “La Fe” University Hospital. Valencia, Spain

Archives

Amazon Shop

The Safety and Feasibility of Image-Guided BrainPath-Mediated Trans-Sulcal Hematoma Evacuation

Haptic Virtual Reality Aneurysm Clipping

Subtemporal Approach for AICA Aneurysm Clipping

MCA Aneurysm Anatomical Classification Scheme

Blister Aneurysms of the Internal Carotid Artery

Bypass for Complex Basilar Aneurysms

Basilar Invagination and Atlanto-Axial Dislocation Video 1

Indocyanine Green Videoangiography “In Negative” Video 2

Indocyanine Green Videoangiography “In Negative” Video 1

Management of a Recurrent Coiled Giant Posterior Cerebral Artery Aneurysm

Bypass for Complex Basilar Aneurysms

Expanded Endonasal Approach for 2012 MERC

Endoscopic Endonasal Middle Clinoidectomy Video 1

Endoscopic Endonasal Middle Clinoidectomy Video 2

Neurosurgery CNS: Flash Fluorescence for MCA Bypass Video 2

Neurosurgery CNS: Flash Fluorescence for MCA Bypass Video 1

Neurosurgery CNS: Endoscopic Transventricular Lamina Terminalis Fenestration Video 2

Neurosurgery CNS: Endoscopic Transventricular Lamina Terminalis Fenestration Video 1

Neurosurgery CNS: Surgery for Giant PCOM Aneurysms Video 2

Neurosurgery CNS: Surgery for Giant PCOM Aneurysms Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS: Endovascular-Surgical Approach to Cavernous dAVF

Neurosurgery CNS: Lateral Supraorbital Approach Applied to Anterior Clinoidal Meningiomas Video 4

Neurosurgery CNS: Lateral Supraorbital Approach Applied to Anterior Clinoidal Meningiomas Video 3

Neurosurgery CNS: Lateral Supraorbital Approach Applied to Anterior Clinoidal Meningiomas Video 2

Neurosurgery CNS: Lateral Supraorbital Approach Applied to Anterior Clinoidal Meningiomas Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS: Surgery of AVMs in Motor Areas

NeurosurgeryCNS: The Fenestrated Yaşargil T-Bar Clip

NeurosurgeryCNS: Cotton-Clipping Technique to Repair Intraoperative Aneurysm Neck Tear Video 3

NeurosurgeryCNS: Cotton-Clipping Technique to Repair Intraoperative Aneurysm Neck Tear Video 2

NeurosurgeryCNS: Cotton-Clipping Technique to Repair Intraoperative Aneurysm Neck Tear Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS. ‘Double-Stick Tape’ Technique for Offending Vessel Transposition in Microvascular Decompression

NeurosurgeryCNS: Advances in the Treatment and Outcome of Brain Stem Cavernous Malformation Surgery: 300 Patients

3T MRI Integrated Neuro Suite

NeurosurgeryCNS: 3D In Vivo Modeling of Vestibular Schwannomas and Surrounding Cranial Nerves Using DIT

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 7

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 6

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 5

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 4

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 3

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 2

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microsurgery for Previously Coiled Aneurysms: Experience on 81 Patients: Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS: Corticotomy Closure Avoids Subdural Collections After Hemispherotomy

NeurosurgeryCNS: Operative Nuances of Side-to-Side in Situ PICA-PICA Bypass Procedure

NeurosurgeryCNS. Waterjet Dissection in Neurosurgery: An Update After 208 Procedures: Video 3

NeurosurgeryCNS. Waterjet Dissection in Neurosurgery: An Update After 208 Procedures: Video 2

NeurosurgeryCNS. Waterjet Dissection in Neurosurgery: An Update After 208 Procedures: Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS: Fusiform Aneurysms of the Anterior Communicating Artery

NeurosurgeryCNS. Initial Clinical Experience with a High Definition Exoscope System for Microneurosurgery

NeurosurgeryCNS: Endoscopic Treatment of Arachnoid Cysts Video 2

NeurosurgeryCNS: Endoscopic Treatment of Arachnoid Cysts Video 1

NeurosurgeryCNS: Typical colloid cyst at the foramen of Monro.

NeurosurgeryCNS: Neuronavigation for Neuroendoscopic Surgery

NeurosurgeryCNS:New Aneurysm Clip System for Particularly Complex Aneurysm Surgery

NeurosurgeryCNS: AICA/PICA Anatomical Variants Penetrating the Subarcuate Fossa Dura

Craniopharyngioma Supra-Orbital Removal

NeurosurgeryCNS: Use of Flexible Hollow-Core CO2 Laser in Microsurgical Resection of CNS Lesions

NeurosurgeryCNS: Ulnar Nerve Decompression

NeurosurgeryCNS: Microvascular decompression for hemifacial spasm

NeurosurgeryCNS: ICG Videoangiography

NeurosurgeryCNS: Inappropiate aneurysm clip applications


32,757
Unique
Visitors
Powered By Google Analytics

Total views

  • 0
%d bloggers like this: