OBJECTIVE: Resection of meningiomas involving the cavernous sinus often is incomplete and associated with considerable morbidity. As a result, an increasing number of patients with such tumors have been treated with gamma knife surgery (GKS). However, few studies have investigated the long-term outcome for this group of patients. METHODS: 100 patients (23 male/77 female) with meningiomas involving the cavernous sinus received GKS at the Department of Neurosurgery at Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway, between November 1988 and July 2006. They were followed for a mean of 82.0 (range, 0-243) months. Only 2 patients were lost to long-term follow-up. Sixty patients underwent craniotomy before radiosurgery, whereas radiosurgery was the primary treatment for 40 patients. RESULTS: Tumor growth control was achieved in 84.0% of patients. Twelve patients required re-treatment: craniotomy (7), radiosurgery (1), or both (4). Three out of 5 patients with repeated radiosurgery demonstrated secondary tumor growth control. Excluding atypical meningiomas, the growth control rate was 90.4%. The 1-, 5-, and 10-year actuarial tumor growth control rates are 98.9%, 94.2%, and 91.6%, respectively. Treatment failure was preceded by clinical symptoms in 14 of 15 patients. Most tumor growths appeared within 2.5 years. Only one third grew later (range, 6-20 yr). The complication rate was 6.0%: optic neuropathy (2), pituitary dysfunction (3), worsening of diplopia (1), and radiation edema (1). Mortality was 0. At last follow-up, 88.0% were able to live independent lives. CONCLUSION: GKS gives long-term growth control and has a low complication rate. Most tumor growths manifest within 3 years following treatment. However, some appear late, emphasizing the need for long-term follow-up.
The ability to diagnose brain tumors intraoperatively and identify tumor margins during resection could maximize resection and minimize morbidity. Advances in optical imaging enabled production of a handheld intraoperative confocal microscope.
To present a feasibility analysis of the intraoperative confocal microscope for brain tumor resection.
Thirty-three patients with brain tumor treated at Barrow Neurological Institute were examined. All patients received an intravenous bolus of sodium fluorescein before confocal imaging with the Optiscan FIVE 1 system probe. Optical biopsies were obtained within each tumor and along the tumor-brain interfaces. Corresponding pathologic specimens were then excised and processed. These data was compared by a neuropathologist to identify the concordance for tumor histology, grade, and margins.
Thirty-one of 33 lesions were tumors (93.9%) and 2 cases were identified as radiation necrosis (6.1%). Of the former, 25 (80.6%) were intra-axial and 6 (19.4%) were extra-axial. Intra-axial tumors were most commonly gliomas and metastases, while all extra-axial tumors were meningiomas. Among high-grade gliomas, vascular neoproliferation, as well as tumor margins, were identifiable using confocal imaging. Meningothelial and fibrous meningiomas were distinct on confocal microscopy--the latter featured spindle-shaped cells distinguishable from adjacent parenchyma. Other tumor histologies correlated well with standard neuropathology tissue preparations.
Intraoperative confocal microscopy is a practicable technology for the resection of human brain tumors. Preliminary analysis demonstrates reliability for a variety of lesions in identifying tumor cells and the tumor-brain interface. Further refinement of this technology depends upon the approval of tumor-specific fluorescent contrast agents for human use.