ISSN : 2146-3123
E-ISSN : 2146-3131

Microsurgery for Vestibular Schwannoma via Retrosigmoid Transmeatal Approach with Intraoperative Monitoring Techniques
Li-Hua Chen1, Hong-Tian Zhang1, Kai Sun2, Wen-Jin Chen1, Ru-Xiang Xu1
1Department of Neurosurgery, Sichuan Academy of Medical Sciences and Sichuan Provincial People’s Hospital, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China
2Department of Neurosurgery, The Third Affiliated Hospital of The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, China
DOI : 10.5152/balkanmedj.2021.20145
Pages : 212-221

Background: Functional preservation of cranial nerves remains an issue in surgical treatment of vestibular schwannoma.
Aims: To explore the functional outcomes of vestibular schwannoma removed by microsurgery via a retrosigmoid transmeatal approach with intraoperative monitoring techniques.
Study Design: A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted on a group of patients with vestibular schwannoma operated by microsurgery.
Methods: The outcomes, including the extent of tumor removal, the anatomic positions of the facial nerve, and postoperative Karnofsky performance status score, facial nerve function, and hearing function were reviewed and were statistically compared among tumor sizes (small, medium, and giant) and intraoperative monitoring types [electrophysiological monitoring only (E), electrophysiological monitoring + intraoperative imaging examination (E+I), and electrophysiological monitoring + neuronavigation (E+N)].
Results: A total of 436 patients with VS received microsurgery. The position of the facial nerve was anterior in 85.5% of cases with small vestibular schwannoma. Other position patterns, especially anterior–superior and anterior–inferior, increased in tumors > 2.0 cm. Total resections were performed in all patients with small vestibular schwannoma. A total of 98.1% and 84.8% of patients with medium and giant vestibular schwannoma, respectively, had total resections. More than 90% of patients in all of the 3 monitoring groups had total resections. More than 80% of patients had excellent Karnofsky performance status score regardless of tumor size and monitoring type. After surgery, 100%, 84.4%, and 59.8% of patients with small-, medium-, and giant-sized vestibular schwannoma, respectively, had good facial nerve function. More than 70% of patients in all of the 3 monitoring groups had good facial nerve function postoperatively. The hearing preservation rate was 26.7% and 7.7% in small- and medium-sized vestibular schwannoma, respectively, and was 21.6% and 27.3% in the E group and the E+N group, respectively. The statistical analyses showed that tumor size was significantly associated with the extent of tumor resection, facial nerve localization, complications, postoperative Karnofsky performance status score, facial nerve function, and hearing function (all P ≤ .001). Monitoring type was significantly associated with the extent of resection (P ≤ .001). Additionally, patients in the E+N group had higher total resection rates than those in the E group (P ≤ .001). No cerebrospinal fluid leakage and surgery-related death occurred.
Conclusion: In vestibular schwannoma microsurgery, tumor size is an important parameter that affects the localization of the facial nerve, the extent of resection, postoperative outcomes and complications. Intraoperative electrophysiological techniques combined with neuronavigation may be helpful to improve the extent of resection.

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