Volumetric stereotaxy and the supratentorial occipitosubtemporal approach in the resection of posterior hippocampus and parahippocampal gyrus lesions

Stephen M. Russell, Patrick J. Kelly, M. Peter Heilbrun, Pantaleo Romanelli, Philip H. Gutin, Nicholas M. Barbaro, Michael McDermott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: Resection of intracranial tumors in the posterior hippocampus and the parahippocampal gyrus can be associated with significant morbidity because of the parenchymal resection and the cortical retraction often required in gaining access to this infrequently explored region. With the use of image guidance, the occipitosubtemporal (OST) approach requires neither lateral cortical resection nor the placement of brain retractors to gain surgical access to the posterior hippocampus and the parahippocampal gyrus, and this approach is associated with a high rate of gross total tumor resection. METHODS: The computer-assisted volumetric stereotactic OST approach was used to resect 40 posterior hippocampus and parahippocampal gyrus tumors in 34 consecutive patients during an 8-year period. Patient, radiographic, and surgical outcome data were collected retrospectively. RESULTS: The series included operations in 25 men and 15 women, and the patients' average age was 40.3 years (range, 15-69 yr). Twenty-five of the 40 procedures were performed to remove lesions in the dominant hemisphere, and previous craniotomies for resection had been performed in 12 of 40 cases. In 38 of 40 cases, histopathological analysis revealed a glial neoplasm, and 50% of these tumors were high-grade lesions. Preoperatively, 23 patients were neurologically intact before 40 procedures, whereas visual field deficits were noted in 7 patients, mild hemiparesis was documented in 4 patients, and other neurological deficits were present in 9 patients. An excellent outcome (Glasgow Outcome Scale Grade 5) was noted after 38 (95%) of the 40 computer-assisted volumetric stereotactic OST procedures. Permanent postoperative hemiparesis (Glasgow Outcome Scale Grade 4) occurred after one procedure, and a second patient, despite being neurologically unchanged postoperatively and despite having had an optimal tumor resection, died on postoperative Day 33 (Glasgow Outcome Scale Grade 1). Complete resection of the preoperatively defined tumor volume was noted on postoperative gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging examinations after 39 (97.5%) of the 40 procedures. The average duration of clinical follow-up was 15.9 months (range, 0.5-67 mo). CONCLUSION: We think that the OST approach is well suited to the resection of tumors in the posterior hippocampus and the parahippocampal gyrus. By allowing the neurosurgeon to avoid unnecessary brain resection and retraction, this approach reduces the risk of injury to important lateral temporal and occipital lobe cortex and tracts. In addition, the resection of a posterior hippocampus or parahippocampal gyrus mass with the OST approach relieves temporal horn entrapment. Computer-assisted volumetric stereotaxy helps the neurosurgeon to maintain precise spatial and anatomic orientation and accurately delineates the margin between the tumor and the surrounding neural tissue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)978-988
Number of pages11
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2002


  • Brain neoplasm
  • Computer
  • Hippocampus
  • Stereotaxy
  • Temporal lobe

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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