Neurosurgical management of petrous bone lesions: classification system and selection of surgical approaches.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Surgery of petrous bone lesions (PBLs) is challenging for neurosurgeons. Selection of the surgical approach is an important key for success. In this study, the authors present an anatomical classification for PBLs that has been used by our group for over the past 26 years. The objective of this study is to investigate the benefits and applicability of this classification. METHODS: Between 1994 and 2019, 117 patients treated for PBLs were retrospectively reviewed. Using the V3 and arcuate eminence as reference points, the petrous bone is segmented into 3 parts: petrous apex, rhomboid, and posterior. The pathological diagnoses, selection of the operative approach, and the extent of resection (EOR) were analyzed and correlated using this classification. RESULTS: This series included 22 facial nerve schwannomas (18.8%), 22 cholesterol granulomas (18.8%), 39 chordomas/chondrosarcomas (33.3%), 6 trigeminal schwannomas (5.1%), 13 epidermoids/dermoids (11.1%), and 15 other pathologies (12.8%). PBLs were most often involved with the petrous apex and rhomboid areas (46.2%). The extradural subtemporal approach (ESTA) was most frequently used (57.3%). Gross total resection was achieved in 58.4%. Symptomatic improvement occurred in 92 patients (78.6%). Our results demonstrated a correlation between this classification with each type of pathology (p < .001), selection of surgical approaches (p < 0.001), and EOR (p = 0.008). Chordoma/chondrosarcoma, redo operations, and lesions located medially were less likely to have total resection. Temporary complications occurred in 8 cases (6.8%), persistent morbidity in 5 cases (4.3%), and mortality in 1 case. CONCLUSION: In this study, we proposed a simple classification of PBLs. Using landmarks on the superior petrosal surface, the petrous bone is divided into 3 parts, apex, rhomboid, and posterior. Our results demonstrated that chordoma/chondrosarcoma, redo operations, and lesions involving the tip of the petrous apex or far medial locations were more difficult to achieve total resection. This classification could help surgeons understand surgical anatomy framework, predict possible structures at risk, and select the most appropriate approach for each patient.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Bawornvaraporn, U; Zomorodi, AR; Friedman, AH; Fukushima, T

Published Date

  • October 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 163 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 2895 - 2907

PubMed ID

  • 34313854

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 0942-0940

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s00701-021-04934-9


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Austria