Title: Preservation of hearing in acoustic neuromas treated by gamma knife surgery.

Authors: Thomassin JM, Epron JP, Regis J, Delsanti C, Sarabian A, Peragut JC, Pellet W
Location: Federation of Oto-neurosurgery, CHU TIMONE, Marseille, France.

Source: Stereotact Funct Neurosurg 1998 Oct;70 Suppl 1:74-9


138 acoustic schwannomas were treated by Gamma Knife surgery from July 1992 to May 1994. Cases with neurofibromatosiswere excluded because of differences in the patterns of growth and development of tumors in these cases. Hearing was evaluated by tonal and vocal audiometry and classified using the Gardner and Robertson score. 104 patients were observed at3 years after treatment. Hearing studies, the relation of tumor volume to hearing, central and marginal dose, number of shotsand preoperative brain-stem-evoked responses (BER) were all recorded. 70% of patients with normal hearing maintained useful hearing, and 50% of patients with useful hearing maintained serviceable hearing. No correlation was found between hearing preservation and tumor volume, central and marginal dose and number of shots. Gamma Knife surgery seems to be superior to microsurgery with regard to preservation of useful hearing.

Inez's note: GammaKnife is as risky as surgery in my view. One really needs a definition of useful hearing and serviceable hearing. These words have the ring of neurosurgeon bull to them. I'd like to know how the patients with the "useful" and "serviceable" hearing view their impairment . . .

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