Primary Ectopic Ethmoidal Craniopharyngioma

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Abstract

Craniopharyngiomas are benign but aggressive epithelial tumors usually originating in the anterior lobe of the pituitary gland from squamous remnants of an incompletely involuted craniopharingeal duct developing from the Rathke pouch. To the authors’ knowledge only 1 patient of a primary isolated ethmoidal craniopharyngioma has been reported in the literature.

The authors report the case of a 17-year-old boy with a primary extracranial ethmoidal craniopharyngioma. An endoscopic endonasal approach was employed to resect the tumor. After 2 years of clinical and radiological follow-up no recurrence of disease was observed.

Primary ethmoidal craniopharyngiomas are rare entities and biopsy is necessary for diagnosis. However, a preoperative assessment by means of nasal endoscopy, computed tomography scan, and enhanced magnetic resonance imaging is mandatory to better evaluate the extension and characteristics of the tumor. The endoscopic endonasal technique is a safe and effective approach for the treatment of these lesions.

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