Preserving the cerebellar hemispheric tentorial bridging veins through a novel tentorial cut technique for supracerebellar approaches

J Neurosurg 140:260–270, 2024

OBJECTIVE The objective of this study was to describe the distribution pattern of cerebellar hemispheric tentorial bridging (CHTB) veins on the tentorial surface in a case series of perimedian or paramedian supracerebellar approaches and to describe a novel technique to preserve these veins.

METHODS A series of 141 patients with various pathological processes in different locations was operated on via perimedian or paramedian supracerebellar approaches by the senior author from July 2006 through October 2022 and was retrospectively evaluated. During surgery, the number and locations of all CHTB veins were recorded to establish a distribution map on the tentorial surface, divided into nine zones. Patients were classified into four groups according to the surgical technique used to manage CHTB veins: 1) group 1 consisted of CHTB veins preserved without intervention during surgery or no CHTB veins found in the surgical route; 2) group 2 included CHTB veins coagulated during surgery; 3) group 3 included CHTB veins preserved with arachnoid and/or tentorial dissection from the cerebellar or tentorial surface, respectively; and 4) group 4 comprised CHTB veins preserved using a novel tentorial cut technique.

RESULTS Overall, 141 patients were included in the study. Of these 141 patients, 38 were in group 1 (27%), 32 in group 2 (22.7%), 47 in group 3 (33.3%), and 24 in group 4 (17%). The total number of CHTB veins encountered was 207 during surgeries on one side. According to the distribution zones of the tentorium, zone 5 had the highest density of CHTB veins, while zone 7 had the lowest. Of the patients in group 4, 6 underwent the perimedian supracerebellar approach and 18 had the paramedian supracerebellar approach. There were 39 CHTB veins on the surface of the 24 cerebellar hemispheres in group 4. The tentorial cut technique was performed for 27 of 39 CHTB veins. Twelve veins were not addressed because they did not present any obstacles during approaches. During surgery, no complications were observed due to the tentorial cut technique.

CONCLUSIONS Because there is no way to determine whether a CHTB vein can be sacrificed without complications, it is important to protect these veins in supracerebellar approaches. This new tentorial cut technique in perimedian or paramedian supracerebellar approaches makes it possible to preserve CHTB veins encountered during supracerebellar surgeries.