Surgery of Anterior Skull Base Lesions in Children

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Abstract

Introduction:

Lesions affecting the anterior skull base represent a rare group of craniofacial pathologies. A tumor of the facial midline, meningitis, or rhinoliquorrhea may be indicative of malformations like dermoid cysts, gliomas, encephaloceles, or nasal fistulas.

Methods:

We present a case series of 13 children (4 months to 12 years; 8 males, 5 females) with lesions involving the anterior skull base, which were treated surgically in an interdisciplinary setting. This case series includes cases of nasal fistulae (n = 5), nasal cysts (n = 5), aneurysmal bone cyst, nasal glioma, and meningoencephalocele (n = 1).

Results:

All lesions were resected with a transnasal, transcutaneous, and/or transcranial approach with reconstruction of the anterior skull base if intracranial/intradural extension was detected. In 5 cases, a dura leakage was visible, which was sealed via Onlay-technique in 3 cases, whereas in 2 cases involving a greater dural defect, the GAP-CAS technique was performed. No complications occurred, and no recurrence was visible in a long-term follow-up. An algorithm for a systematic approach to these various pathologies is provided.

Conclusion:

Congenital pathologies of the anterior skull base are rare, challenging to diagnose, and present as clinical emergencies. An interdisciplinary surgical approach is needed for best functional and aesthetic results.

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