Neurotologic skull base surgery in pediatric patients.
OBJECTIVE: Innovations in diagnosis, surgical techniques, and perioperative care have dramatically improved outcomes in lateral skull base procedures in recent years. There is a belief, however, that children with skull base tumors have yet to benefit from these technological and procedural advances. The purpose of this study is to provide a clinical review of neurotologic skull base surgery in the pediatric population. STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective case review. SETTING: Private practice tertiary referral center. PATIENTS: Eighty-nine pediatric patients undergoing 115 neurotologic procedures for lateral skull base tumors from July 1992 to September 2003. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Initial clinical presentation, tumor type, pre- and postoperative hearing and facial nerve status, treatment course, complications, and functional outcomes. RESULTS: The majority of tumors in this series were vestibular schwannomas, and 65 patients were diagnosed with neurofibromatosis Type 2. Surgical approaches included 70 middle fossa, 40 translabyrinthine, 2 transcochlear, 2 infratemporal fossa, and 1 retrosigmoid craniotomy. Complete tumor removal was accomplished in the majority of cases (97%), with good preservation of facial nerve function (House-Brackmann Grade I or II) in 80% of patients. In patients undergoing middle fossa surgery for hearing preservation, measurable hearing was preserved in 61.4% of cases. The incidence of complications was low. CONCLUSION: With advances in diagnostic procedures and use of current neurotologic techniques, pediatric patients may undergo successful treatment of lateral skull base tumors, with good functional outcomes and minimal morbidity.
Cunningham, CD; Friedman, RA; Brackmann, DE; Hitselberger, WE; Lin, HW
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