Endonasal technique improves tumor removal

Surgeons at the Cranial Base Center at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center-Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute have developed a minimally invasive technique to reach and remove skull-based tumors through the nose or mouth, sparing patients from considerable pain from traditional open surgery and allowing for a quicker recovery.

The procedure combines endoscopic endonasal surgery with minimally invasive robotic surgery to treat many tumors that are difficult to reach, including those considered to be inoperable, the university said in a press release.

The endoscopic endonasal approach is a skull base technique that gives surgeons access to the base of the skull, intracranial cavity, and top of the spine by operating through the nose and paranasal sinuses.

Using tiny surgical instruments, a brain surgeon and an ear, nose, and throat surgeon work through both nostrils while using the robot through the mouth. High-definition cameras and high-tech equipment similar to a GPS map of the brain allow them to find and remove tumors -- all through the patient's nose and mouth.

The use of minimally invasive robotic-assisted instruments offers a number of advantages, including three-dimensional visualization, tremor-free surgical tools and magnified vision.

"This type of surgery offers improved quality of life and functional benefits for the patients," said Enver Ozer, assistant professor, department of otolaryngology, head and neck surgery. "We are very excited about its potential and our ability to treat patients with less pain and a faster recovery."

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