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Endoscopic endonasal transsphenoidal surgery: experience with 50 patients

Hae-Dong Jho and Ricardo L. Carrau

An endoscope was used in transsphenoidal surgery and eventually replaced the operating microscope as a tool for visualization. Initially four patients underwent operation via a sublabial transseptal approach using a rigid endoscope in conjunction with an operating microscope. The 48 subsequent operations were performed through a nostril using only rigid endoscopes. Forty-four patients had pituitary adenomas and six had various other lesions. Thirteen patients had microadenomas, 16 had intrasellar macroadenomas, nine had macroadenomas with suprasellar extension, and six had invasive macroadenomas involving the cavernous sinus. Among eight patients with Cushing's disease, seven were cured. Of 17 patients with prolactinomas, 10 were cured clinically and chemically. Among 19 patients with nonsecreting adenomas, 16 underwent total resection and three subtotal resection, with residual tumor in the cavernous sinus. Postoperatively all patients who had undergone endonasal endoscopic surgery had unobstructed nasal airways with minimal discomfort. More than half of the patients required only an overnight hospitalization.

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Endoscopic endonasal transsphenoidal surgery: experience with 50 patients

Hae-Dong Jho and Ricardo L. Carrau

✓ An endoscope was used in transsphenoidal surgery and eventually replaced the operating microscope as the tool for visualization. This study focuses on 50 patients (28 females and 22 males) with a median age of 38 years (range 14–88 years). Initially, four patients underwent operation via a sublabial—transseptal approach using a rigid endoscope in conjunction with an operating microscope. The 48 subsequent operations were performed through a nostril using only rigid endoscopes. Forty-four patients had pituitary adenomas and six had various other lesions. Thirteen patients had microadenomas, 16 had intrasellar macroadenomas, nine had macroadenomas with suprasellar extension, and six had invasive macroadenomas involving the cavernous sinus. Seven patients had recurrent pituitary adenomas and 25 had hormonesecreting adenomas (eight patients with Cushing's disease and 17 patients with prolactinomas). Among the eight patients with Cushing's disease, seven had resolution of hypercortisolism clinically and chemically. Of the 17 patients with prolactinomas, 10 improved clinically with normal serum prolactin levels, four improved clinically with elevated serum prolactin levels, and three had residual tumors in the cavernous sinus. Among the 19 patients with nonsecreting adenomas, 16 underwent total resection and three subtotal resection leaving residual tumor in the cavernous sinus. Postoperatively, all patients who had undergone endonasal endoscopic surgery had unobstructed nasal airways with minimal discomfort. More than half of the patients required only an overnight hospitalization.

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Endoscopic transsphenoidal resection of a large chordoma in the posterior fossa

Case report

Hae-Dong Jho, Ricardo L. Carrau, Mark L. McLaughlin, and Salvador C. Somaza

The authors report their encouraging experience using an endoscopic technique for transsphenoidal surgery in a patient with a large chordoma in the posterior fossa. The patient was a 40-year-old man with a 2-year history of progressive ataxia, a memory disorder, and emotional instability. A magnetic resonance (MR) image of the brain revealed a midline posterior fossa mass measuring 4 cm in diameter located between the clivus and the brainstem. The basilar artery and its bifurcation were encased by the tumor, which also distorted the brainstem. The patient had been treated at another hospital for obstructive hydrocephalus with a ventriculoperitoneal shunt and he received fractionated external-beam radiation treatment, although no histological diagnosis was ever made. The authors achieved a subtotal resection of the tumor through the patient's nostril using an endoscopic transsphenoidal technique. The portion of the tumor located behind the basilar artery was not resected to protect the brainstem perforating arteries. The patient showed dramatic improvement of his symptoms postoperatively. Residual tumor located behind the basilar artery was treated by stereotactic gamma knife surgery. This is the first reported case of a large posterior fossa chordoma treated by an endoscopic transsphenoidal technique.

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Expanded endoscopic endonasal transpterygoid transmaxillary approach for a giant trigeminal schwannoma

Rafael Martínez-Pérez, Marcus Zachariah, Ruychen Li, Giuliano Silveira-Bertazzo, Ricardo L. Carrau, and Daniel M. Prevedello

Atypical trigeminal schwannomas (ATSs) are notorious for their ability to invade the skull base. An expanded endoscopic endonasal approach (eEEA) provides direct access to the tumor with no need for cerebral retraction or manipulation of neurovascular structures. Herein, we present a case of a large temporal fossa extradural lesion with secondary invasion of the sella, clivus, and temporal and infratemporal fossae in a 49-year-old male with severe vision loss. A transpterygoid transmaxillary approach was performed. Gross-total removal was achieved and pathology revealed the diagnosis of ATS. Visual function fully recovered in the right side and the patient has been uneventfully followed since surgery.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/6pSwdYsN9hk.

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Endoscopic endonasal transclival petroclival meningioma resection

Stephen T. Magill, Ben G. McGahan, Ricardo L. Carrau, and Daniel M. Prevedello

Petroclival meningiomas are surgically challenging due to the surrounding neurovascular structures. Petroclival meningiomas located inferior to the oculomotor nerve and superior or medial to the abducens nerve are ideal for an endoscopic endonasal transclival approach because this prevents the need to work across cranial nerves, limiting operative risk. The authors present a case of a 45-year-old woman with a growing petroclival meningioma that was distorting the pons. In the video they demonstrate the technique and discuss nuances of petroclival meningioma resection via an endoscopic endonasal transclival approach with posterior clinoidectomy.

The video can be found here: https://stream.cadmore.media/r10.3171/2022.1.FOCVID21209

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Expanded endonasal approach: the rostrocaudal axis. Part I. Crista galli to the sella turcica

Amin Kassam, Carl H. Snyderman, Arlan Mintz, Paul Gardner, and Ricardo L. Carrau

Object

Transsphenoidal approaches have been used for a century for the resection of pituitary and other sellar tumors. More recently, the standard endonasal approach has been expanded to provide access to other, parasellar lesions. With the addition of the endoscope, this expansion carries significant potential for the resection of skull base lesions.

Methods

The anatomical landmarks and surgical techniques used in expanded (extended) endoscopic approaches to the rostral, anterior skull base are reviewed and presented, accompanied by case illustrations of each segment (or module) of approach. The rostral half of the anterior skull base is divided into modules of approach: sellar/parasellar, transplanum/transtuberculum, and transcribriform. Case illustrations of successful resections of lesions with each module are presented and discussed.

Conclusions

Endoscopic, expanded endonasal approaches to rostral anterior skull base lesions are feasible and hold great potential for decreased morbidity. The effectiveness and appropriate use of these techniques must be evaluated by close examination of outcomes as case series expand.

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Expanded endonasal approach: the rostrocaudal axis. Part II. Posterior clinoids to the foramen magnum

Amin Kassam, Carl H. Snyderman, Arlan Mintz, Paul Gardner, and Ricardo L. Carrau

Object

Transsphenoidal approaches have been used for a century for the resection of pituitary and other sellar tumors. Recently, however, the standard endonasal approach has been expanded to provide access to other parasellar lesions. With the addition of the endoscope, this expansion has significant potential for the resection of skull base lesions.

Methods

The anatomical landmarks and surgical techniques used in expanded (extended) endoscopic approaches to the clivus and cervicomedullary junction are reviewed and presented, accompanied by case illustrations of each segment (or module) of approach.

The caudal portion of the midline anterior skull base and the cervicomedullary junction is divided into modules of approach: the middle third of the clivus, its lower third, and the cervicomedullary junction. Case illustrations of successful resections of lesions via each module of the approach are presented and discussed.

Conclusions

Endoscopic expanded endonasal approaches to caudally located midline anterior skull base and cervicomedullary lesions are feasible and hold great potential for decreased morbidity. The effectiveness and appropriate use of these techniques must be evaluated by close examination of outcomes as case series expand.

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Endoneurosurgical hemostasis techniques: lessons learned from 400 cases

Amin Kassam, Carl H. Snyderman, Ricardo L. Carrau, Paul Gardner, and Arlan Mintz

The increasing popularity of minimally invasive neurosurgery has led to the development of transnasal expanded approaches for the treatment of skull base lesions. One of the greatest challenges in safely accomplishing resection of tumors, particularly intradural lesions, is effective hemostasis. Over the past 7 years the authors have progressively developed an organized approach to address this challenge. This has required the development of new instrumentation as well as variations on standard techniques. In this report they present the technique that has evolved at their institution for endoneurosurgical hemostasis.

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Evolution of reconstructive techniques following endoscopic expanded endonasal approaches

Amin Kassam, Ricardo L. Carrau, Carl H. Snyderman, Paul Gardner, and Arlan Mintz

Harvey Cushing first popularized the transsphenoidal route to the sella turcica, and Jules Hardy subsequently refined it by adding the operating microscope. Over the ensuing decades, attempts at extending the application of this approach have been advanced by Edward Laws and others. With the evolution of endoscopic approaches, the natural expansion of their use to intradural lesions followed. For the expanded endonasal approach to become a viable option, the paramount concerns surrounding consistent reconstruction of the dura mater must be overcome. In this review the authors chronicle the evolution of the reconstruction technique they currently use after performing expanded endonasal approaches. They also report the use of a balloon stent to buttress the reconstruction and counter the effects of graft migration and cerebrospinal fluid fistula formation. The technique described in this report represents an important step forward in the reconstruction of defects resulting from expanded endonasal approaches.

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Surgical management of craniopharyngioma with third ventricle involvement

Danielle de Lara, Leo F. S. Ditzel Filho, Jun Muto, Bradley A. Otto, Ricardo L. Carrau, Daniel M. Prevedello, and M.D.

Craniopharyngiomas are notorious for their ability to invade the hypothalamus and third ventricle. Although several transcranial approaches have been proposed for their treatment, the endonasal route provides direct access to the tumor with no need for cerebral retraction or manipulation of the optic apparatus. After the lesion is debulked, the unique angle of approach achieved with this technique enables the surgeon to perform an extra-capsular dissection and visualize the walls of the third ventricle, the foramina of Monro, and the anterior comissure. Moreover, the enhanced magnification and lighting afforded by the endoscope facilitate safe tumor removal, particularly in areas where there is loss of clear lesion delimitation and greater infiltration of the surrounding structures.

Herein we present the case of a 68-year-old female patient with a 3-month history of visual deterioration accompanied by worsening headaches. Investigation with magnetic resonance imaging revealed a heterogeneous mass in the suprasellar region, extending into the third ventricle and displacing the pituitary gland and stalk inferiorly. Hormonal profile was within expected range for her age. An endonasal, fully endoscopic, transplanum transtuberculum approach was performed. Gross-total removal was achieved and pathology confirmed the diagnosis of craniopharyngioma. Postoperative recovery was marked by transient diabetes insipidus. Closure was achieved with a pedicled nasoseptal flap; despite exploration of the third ventricle, there was no cerebrospinal fluid leakage. Pituitary function was preserved. Visual function has fully recovered and the patient has been uneventfully followed since surgery.

The video can be found here: http://youtu.be/it5mpofZl0Q .