Combined Petrosal Approaches in the Management of Temporal Bone Meningiomas

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To evaluate the indications and outcomes of the combined petrosal approaches in the surgical management of temporal bone meningiomas.

Study Design:

Retrospective chart review.


University teaching hospital.


Adults with temporal bone meningiomas.


Meningioma removal using a combined petrosal approach.

Main Outcome Measure(s):

Cranial nerve outcomes, complications, completeness of resection, and recurrence rates.


Forty-nine patients underwent surgical excision of a temporal bone meningioma between 1996 and 2004 at our institution. Nineteen of these patients required a combined petrosal approach for excision. The most common presenting complaints were balance disturbance, 11 (58%); hearing loss, 10 (53%); headache, 10 (53%); and tinnitus, 9 (47%). The most common tumor origin was of the petrous ridge (14; 74%). Average tumor size was 3.1 cm. Complete resection was possible in 17 (89%) patients. Upper cranial nerve (III-VI) function was improved in two (11%) patients and worsened in three (16%) patients. Lower cranial nerve (IX-XII) function improved in one (5%) patient and was worsened in one (5%) patient. Postoperative facial nerve function was Grades I to II in 16 (84%) patients and Grades III to IV in 1 (5%) patient at last follow-up. Hearing data were available in 14 patients. Of those patients, 11 (85%) had serviceable hearing after surgery. The most common surgical complication was a cerebrospinal fluid leak, with three (16%) incidences. There were no reported incidents of stroke, death, or meningitis in the cohort.


The use of the combined petrosal approach for temporal bone meningioma resection results in favorable outcomes for the patient. The incidence of complications is acceptably low, and cure rates are high.

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