Skull Base Surgery

Skull base surgery is a specialized surgical technique that can be employed to treat benign and malignant tumors and cerebral aneurysms, repair fractures of the skull base, and to remove deep-seated infections of the skull base bone.

The base of the skull contains numerous critical structures because of its location between the brain and the rest of the body. Vital blood vessels and nerves pass through holes in the skull base, and damage to these can lead to blindness, deafness, loss of the ability to speak and swallow, paralysis, and death.

The basic concept of skull base surgery is to approach the offending tissue from underneath or from the side by removing specific areas of skull base bone. Thus, the tissue can be exposed and with little or no brain retraction. Skull base procedures are adaptable to the particular situation, and may be designed to traverse the bone containing the ear, low on the temple beneath the brain, around the eye, through the nose or paranasal sinuses (trans-sphenoidal/trans-ethmoidal approach), or from the neck. Fundamentally, these are minimally-invasive techniques designed to maximize the efficacy of the surgery while preserving neurological function to the greatest extent possible.

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