Clinical Application of Multimodal Neuronavigation System in Neuroendoscope-Assisted Skull Base Chordoma Resection

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Skull base chordoma is a rare tumor arising from embryonic remnants of the notochord with invasive potential. Due to the destruction of osseous landmarks and invasion of surrounding structures, surgical resection is challenging. The authors explored the clinical value of a multimodal neuronavigation system in skull base chordoma resection using a neuroendoscope. Between January 2012 and January 2016, the authors utilized neuroendoscopy to excise skull base chordoma in 93 patients. The authors performed 45 operations assisted by multimodal neuronavigation (neuronavigation group) and 48 without intraoperative imaging guidance (control group). In the control group, 35 patients (73%) underwent gross total resection. In the neuronavigation group, all patients underwent gross total resection without radiographically identified bleeding. Only 1 patient (2%) in the neuronavigation group showed a temporary reduction in vision, which improved after symptomatic treatment. In contrast, there were 4 patients (8%) with postoperative complication, including 2 patients with intracranial hematoma and 2 with neurological deficits. Complication rates were higher than the neuronavigation group. In the follow-up period, 2 patients in the control group with subtotal resection had recurrence within 24 months, but without extracranial metastases. The multimodal neuronavigation system could contribute intraoperative real-time guidance for spatial relationships between lesions and adjacent neurovascular structures, as well as eroded and distorted anatomical landmarks through multiple image fusion and 3-dimensional reconstruction. It significantly improves surgical outcome and provides a new insight into the management of skull base chordomas.

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