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Eva Pamias-Portalatin, Deependra Mahato, Jordina Rincon-Torroella, Tito Vivas-Buitrago, Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa and Kofi O. Boahene

Clival lesions are still considered surgically complex due to their anatomical location. Critical structures, such as the internal carotid arteries (ICAs), cavernous sinuses, cranial nerves, and brainstem, may be encased within the lesion. Although advances in endoscopic endonasal approaches have provided new routes to these lesions, exposure and resection of clival tumors through the endonasal route remain a technical challenge. Here, the authors report a left-sided endoscopic transmaxillary approach to access the right aspect of the clivus and the hypoglossal canal.

A 35-year-old woman presented with progressive right 6th cranial nerve palsy. MRI revealed a contrast-enhancing right petroclival chondrosarcoma that involved Meckel’s cave and extended into the right hypoglossal canal. An endoscopic-contralateral-transmaxillary approach through a left sublabial incision was used to access the right petroclival region and right hypoglossal canal. A left maxillary osteoplastic flap was elevated to expose the left maxillary sinus. This was followed by a left medial maxillectomy, gaining access to the left posterior nasal cavity. The posterior third of the left inferior turbinate and nasal septum were removed to access the right side of the petroclival region. Near-total resection was achieved without any vascular or neurological complications. A thin shell of residual tumor was left behind due to involvement of vital structures, such as the ICA, and further treated with proton-beam radiotherapy.

The endoscopic-contralateral-transmaxillary approach provides a direct surgical corridor and good lateral visualization of the skull base vasculature. This approach allows wide maneuverability around the ICA and hypoglossal canal, which, in this case, allowed maximal tumor resection with full preservation of neurological function.

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Carl H. Snyderman and Paul A. Gardner

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Karim ReFaey, Kaisorn L. Chaichana, Anteneh M. Feyissa, Tito Vivas-Buitrago, Benjamin H. Brinkmann, Erik H. Middlebrooks, Jake H. McKay, David J. Lankford, Shashwat Tripathi, Elird Bojaxhi, Grayson E. Roth, William O. Tatum and Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa


Epilepsy is common among patients with supratentorial brain tumors; approximately 40%–70% of patients with glioma develop brain tumor–related epilepsy (BTRE). Intraoperative localization of the epileptogenic zone during surgical tumor resection (real-time data) may improve intervention techniques in patients with lesional epilepsy, including BTRE. Accurate localization of the epileptogenic signals requires electrodes with high-density spatial organization that must be placed on the cortical surface during surgery. The authors investigated a 360° high-density ring-shaped cortical electrode assembly device, called the “circular grid,” that allows for simultaneous tumor resection and real-time electrophysiology data recording from the brain surface.


The authors collected data from 99 patients who underwent awake craniotomy from January 2008 to December 2018 (29 patients with the circular grid and 70 patients with strip electrodes), of whom 50 patients were matched-pair analyzed (25 patients with the circular grid and 25 patients with strip electrodes). Multiple variables were then retrospectively assessed to determine if utilization of this device provides more accurate real-time data and improves patient outcomes.


Matched-pair analysis showed higher extent of resection (p = 0.03) and a shorter transient motor recovery period during the hospitalization course (by approximately 6.6 days, p ≤ 0.05) in the circular grid patients. Postoperative versus preoperative Karnofsky Performance Scale (KPS) score difference/drop was greater for the strip electrode patients (p = 0.007). No significant difference in postoperative seizures between the 2 groups was present (p = 0.80).


The circular grid is a safe, feasible tool that grants direct access to the cortical surgical surface for tissue resection while simultaneously monitoring electrical activity. Application of the circular grid to different brain pathologies may improve intraoperative epileptogenic detection accuracy and functional outcomes, while decreasing postoperative complications.