Novel devices for intraoperative monitoring of glossopharyngeal and vagus nerves during skull base surgery

Abstract

BACKGROUND Swallowing disturbance is among the most burdensome complications suffered by patients with glossopharyngeal and vagus nerve involvement in lesions adjacent the jugular foramen. For monitoring these nerves, we have developed new devices that comprised four contacts adhering to the surface of the cuff of an endotracheal tube, with attachment the posterior pharyngeal wall. To determine whether these devices are useful for monitoring the glossopharyngeal and vagus nerves and predicting postoperative swallowing dysfunction in patients undergoing removal of skull base tumors involving these nerves. METHODS We studied 10 patients. Compound muscle action potentials (CMAPs) were recorded from the posterior pharyngeal wall by stimulating the glossopharyngeal or vagus nerve in order to identify the nerve course, especially in patients showing severe nerve distortion due to the tumor. Pharyngeal motor evoked potential (PhMEP) elicited by transcranial electrical stimulation were recorded in all patients. The correlation between the final to baseline PhMEP ratio and postoperative swallowing function was examined. RESULTS Responses were obtained in six of the seven patients in whom CMAP monitoring was performed. Deterioration of swallowing function postoperatively was demonstrated in six of seven (86%) patients with intraoperative PhMEP ratios <50%. None of the three patients with intraoperative PhMEP ratios >50% showed deterioration of swallowing function after surgery, although the one patient already had severe swallowing dysfunction requiring preoperative tracheostomy. CONCLUSIONS Our novel devices were useful for monitoring the glossopharyngeal and vagus nerves in patients undergoing removal of skull base tumors involving these nerves.

DOI: 10.4103/2152-7806.115650

Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Fukuda2013NovelDF, title={Novel devices for intraoperative monitoring of glossopharyngeal and vagus nerves during skull base surgery}, author={Masafumi Fukuda and Tetsuro Takao and Tetsuya Hiraishi and Naoki Yajima and Akihiko Saito and Yukihiko Fujii}, booktitle={Surgical neurology international}, year={2013} }