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Wendy Chen, Paul A. Gardner, Barton F. Branstetter, Shih-Dun Liu, Yue Fang Chang, Carl H. Snyderman, Jesse A. Goldstein, Elizabeth C. Tyler-Kabara and Lindsay A. Schuster

OBJECTIVE

Cranial base development plays a large role in anterior and vertical maxillary growth through 7 years of age, and the effect of early endonasal cranial base surgery on midface growth is unknown. The authors present their experience with pediatric endoscopic endonasal surgery (EES) and long-term midface growth.

METHODS

This is a retrospective review of cases where EES was performed from 2000 to 2016. Patients who underwent their first EES of the skull base before age 7 (prior to cranial suture fusion) and had a complete set of pre- and postoperative imaging studies (CT or MRI) with at least 1 year of follow-up were included. A radiologist performed measurements (sella-nasion [S-N] distance and angles between the sella, nasion, and the most concave points of the anterior maxilla [A point] or anterior mandibular synthesis [B point], the SNA, SNB, and ANB angles), which were compared to age- and sex-matched Bolton standards. A Z-score test was used; significance was set at p < 0.05.

RESULTS

The early surgery group had 11 patients, with an average follow-up of 5 years; the late surgery group had 33 patients. Most tumors were benign; 1 patient with a panclival arteriovenous malformation was a significant outlier for all measurements. Comparing the measurements obtained in the early surgery group to Bolton standard norms, the authors found no significant difference in postoperative SNA (p = 0.10), SNB (p = 0.14), or ANB (0.67) angles. The S-N distance was reduced both pre- and postoperatively (SD 1.5, p = 0.01 and p = 0.009). Sex had no significant effect. Compared to patients who had surgery after the age of 7 years, the early surgery group demonstrated no significant difference in pre- to postoperative changes with regard to S-N distance (p = 0.87), SNA angle (p = 0.89), or ANB angle (p = 0.14). Lesion type (craniopharyngioma, angiofibroma, and other types) had no significant effect in either age group.

CONCLUSIONS

Though our cohort of patients with skull base lesions demonstrated some abnormal measurements in the maxillary-mandibular relationship before their operation, their postoperative cephalometrics fell within the normal range and showed no significant difference from those of patients who underwent operations at an older age. Therefore, there appears to be no evidence of impact of endoscopic endonasal skull base surgery on craniofacial development within the growth period studied.

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Huy Q. Truong, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Edinson Najera, Ana Carolina Igami Nakassa, Eric W. Wang, Carl H. Snyderman, Paul A. Gardner and Juan C. Fernandez-Miranda

OBJECTIVE

The endoscopic endonasal transcavernous approach with interdural pituitary transposition provides surgical access to the posterior clinoids and interpeduncular cistern. Prior to posterior clinoidectomy, selective coagulation and transection of the inferior hypophyseal artery (IHA) is recommended to prevent uncontrolled tearing of the artery and its avulsion from the wall of the cavernous carotid artery. The authors’ preliminary experience has shown that unilateral sacrifice of the IHA caused no permanent endocrine dysfunction. In this study, they investigated the pituitary function in the setting of bilateral sacrifice of IHAs and pituitary transposition.

METHODS

All patients with normal preoperative pituitary function who underwent endoscopic endonasal bilateral posterior clinoidectomy with bilateral IHA sacrifice between March 2010 and December 2016 were included and retrospectively evaluated. All data regarding pituitary function were collected. The degree of pituitary gland manipulation was estimated based on tumor size on preoperative MRI. An angle between a line from the point where the gland meets the floor of the sella to the highest point of the tumor and the horizontal plane of the sellar floor, or access angle, was also measured. Posterior pituitary bright spots on pre- and postoperative T1-weighted MRI were also reported.

RESULTS

Twenty patients had bilateral transcavernous posterior clinoidectomies with coagulation of both IHAs. There were 13 chordomas, 3 epidermoid cysts, 2 chondrosarcomas, 1 meningioma, and 1 hemangiopericytoma. The mean follow-up was 19 months (range 13–84 months). Two patients experienced transient diabetes insipidus (DI) requiring desmopressin, which resolved before hospital discharge. One patient (with chordoma) developed delayed permanent DI, and a second patient (with hemangiopericytoma) developed permanent DI and panhypopituitarism. The access angle was higher in the group with pituitary dysfunction (47.25° compared to 33.81°; p = 0.07). Posterior pituitary bright spots were preserved in 75% of cases with normal postoperative endocrine function.

CONCLUSIONS

The endoscopic endonasal transcavernous approach to the interpeduncular cistern with pituitary transposition and bilateral sacrifice of the IHAs does not cause pituitary dysfunction in a majority of patients. When endocrine deficit occurs, it appears to be more likely to have been caused by surgical manipulation than loss of blood supply. This finding confirms clinically the crucial concept of interarterial anastomosis of pituitary vasculature proposed by anatomists.

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Wei-Hsin Wang, Stefan Lieber, Roger Neves Mathias, Xicai Sun, Paul A. Gardner, Carl H. Snyderman, Eric W. Wang and Juan C. Fernandez-Miranda

OBJECTIVE

The foramen lacerum is a relevant skull base structure that has been neglected for many years. From the endoscopic endonasal perspective, the foramen lacerum is a key structure due to its location at the crossroad between the sagittal and coronal planes. The objective of this study was to provide a detailed investigation of the surgical anatomy of the foramen lacerum and its adjacent structures based on anatomical dissections and imaging studies, propose several relevant key surgical landmarks, and demonstrate the surgical technique for its full exposure with several illustrative cases.

METHODS

Ten colored silicone-injected anatomical specimens were dissected using a transpterygoid approach to the foramen lacerum region in a stepwise manner. Five similar specimens were used for a comparative transcranial approach. The osseous anatomy was examined in 32 high-resolution multislice CT studies and 1 disarticulated skull. Representative cases were selected to illustrate the application of the findings.

RESULTS

The pterygosphenoidal fissure is the synchondrosis between the lacerum process of the pterygoid bone and the floor of the sphenoid bone. It constantly converges with the posterior end of the vidian canal at a 45° angle, and its posterolateral end points directly to the lacerum foramen. The pterygoid tubercle separates the vidian canal from the pterygosphenoidal fissure, and forms the anterior wall of the lower part of the foramen lacerum. The lingual process, which forms the lateral wall of the foramen lacerum, was identified in 53 of 64 sides and featured an average height of 5 mm. The mandibular strut separates the foramen lacerum from the foramen ovale and had an average width of 5 mm.

CONCLUSIONS

This study provides relevant surgical landmarks and a systematic approach to the foramen lacerum by defining anterior, medial, lateral, and inferior walls that may facilitate its safe exposure for effective removal of lesions while minimizing the risk of injury to the internal carotid artery.

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Amin B. Kassam, Daniel M. Prevedello, Ricardo L. Carrau, Carl H. Snyderman, Ajith Thomas, Paul Gardner, Adam Zanation, Bulent Duz, S. Tonya Stefko, Karin Byers and Michael B. Horowitz

Object

The development of endoscopic endonasal approaches, albeit in the early stages, represents part of the continuous evolution of skull base surgery. During this early period, it is important to determine the safety of these approaches by analyzing surgical complications to identify and eliminate their causes.

Methods

The authors reviewed all perioperative complications associated with endoscopic endonasal skull base surgeries performed between July 1998 and June 2007 at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Results

This study includes the data for the authors' first 800 patients, comprising 399 male (49.9%) and 401 female (50.1%) patients with a mean age of 49.21 years (range 3–96 years). Pituitary adenomas (39.1%) and meningiomas (11.8%) were the 2 most common pathologies. A postoperative CSF leak represented the most common complication, occurring in 15.9% of the patients. All patients with a postoperative CSF leak were successfully treated with a lumbar drain and/or another endoscopic approach, except for 1 patient who required a transcranial repair. The incidence of postoperative CSF leaks decreased significantly with the adoption of vascularized tissue for reconstruction of the skull base (< 6%). Transient neurological deficits occurred in 20 patients (2.5%) and permanent neurological deficits in 14 patients (1.8%). Intracranial infection and systemic complications were encountered and successfully treated in 13 (1.6%) and 17 (2.1%) patients, respectively. Seven patients died during the 30-day perioperative period, 6 of systemic illness and 1 of infection (overall mortality 0.9%).

Conclusions

Endoscopic endonasal skull base surgery provides a viable median corridor based on anatomical landmarks and is customized according to the specific pathological process. This corridor should be considered as the sole access or may be combined with traditional approaches. With the incremental acquisition of skills and experience, endoscopic endonasal approaches have an acceptable safety profile in select patients presenting with various skull base pathologies.

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Oral Presentations

2010 AANS Annual Meeting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 1–5, 2010