The extended pterional craniotomy: A contemporary and balanced approach

Benjamin K. Hendricks, Aaron A. Cohen-Gadol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pterional craniotomy is the workhorse approach among cranial operative corridors. It is a highly flexible skull base approach that affords excellent exposure of the anterior cranial fossa, the circle of Willis, and the interpeduncular region. Its strategic use via dynamic retraction can obviate the need to use a more extensive skull base route, such as orbitozygomatic osteotomy, in select cases. The focus of the surgeon should be reaching the surgical target effectively while minimizing disruption of normal anatomy. In other words, the focus should be less on “how to get there” and more on “what to do when you are there.” This multimedia presentation summarizes an efficient execution of this route and its expansion and demonstrates the surgical corridor via 3-dimensional virtual reality models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-231
Number of pages7
JournalOperative Neurosurgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • 3D
  • Cranial approaches
  • Craniotomy
  • Operative anatomy
  • Virtual reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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