Document Detail

Transcanal approach to the singular nerve.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16791047     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: Intractable benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is rare, and surgery is indicated in only a very small number of cases. Transcanal singular neurectomy is considered a difficult and risky procedure possibly leading to hearing loss and vertigo. The objective of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of the singular neurectomy through the external ear canal in an attempt to explain the contradictory results of previous reports of anatomists and of surgeons who abandoned the technique, considering that the singular neurectomy could not be reached via the external auditory canal without damaging the labyrinth. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Anatomical study on 100 halves of human heads in which the canal of the singular nerve (SN) was identified and opened at its extremities, the internal auditory canal and the ampulla of the posterior semicircular canal, via a posterior fossa approach. Next, the canal of the SN was dissected via the external auditory canal, at the floor of the round window (RW) niche. The relation of the SN canal to the ampulla of the posterior semicircular canal was evaluated. RESULTS: In 90 cases, the canal was transected medially to and away from the ampulla of the posterior semicircular canal, and in 8, at its emergence from the posterior ampullary recess. In these 98 cases, the RW membrane and the bony labyrinth were kept intact. In two cases, the canal of the SN could not be reached at the floor of the RW niche. CONCLUSION: Singular neurectomy is feasible via the external auditory canal, without damaging the RW membrane or the labyrinth in 98% of the cases. Because singular neurectomy is indicated in a very small number of cases, it is difficult to master this particular surgical procedure. This may explain why most surgeons abandoned the technique after a few attempts, followed by an unacceptable rate of sensorineural hearing loss.
Maria Izabel Kos; Georg Feigl; Friedrich Anderhuber; Conrad Wall; Jean H D Fasel; Jean-Philippe Guyot
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Otology & neurotology : official publication of the American Otological Society, American Neurotology Society [and] European Academy of Otology and Neurotology     Volume:  27     ISSN:  1531-7129     ISO Abbreviation:  Otol. Neurotol.     Publication Date:  2006 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2006-06-22     Completed Date:  2008-01-08     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  100961504     Medline TA:  Otol Neurotol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  542-6     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Geneva University Hospital, Geneva, Switzerland.
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MeSH Terms
Aged, 80 and over
Auditory Threshold
Denervation / adverse effects,  methods*
Feasibility Studies
Hearing Loss, Sensorineural / etiology*
Microsurgery / instrumentation,  methods
Middle Aged
Semicircular Ducts / innervation*
Treatment Outcome
Vertigo / surgery*
Vestibular Nerve / physiology,  surgery*

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