Continuous dynamic mapping to avoid accidental injury of the facial nerve during surgery for large vestibular schwannomas.

Seidel, Kathleen; Biner, Matthias S; Zubak, Irena; Rychen, Jonathan; Beck, Jürgen; Raabe, Andreas (2020). Continuous dynamic mapping to avoid accidental injury of the facial nerve during surgery for large vestibular schwannomas. Neurosurgical review, 43(1), pp. 241-248. Springer 10.1007/s10143-018-1044-z

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In vestibular schwannoma (VS) surgery postoperative facial nerve (CN VII) palsy is reducing quality of life. Recently, we have introduced a surgical suction device for continuous dynamic mapping to provide feedback during tumor resection without switching to a separate stimulation probe. The objective was to evaluate the reliability of this method to avoid CN VII injury. Continuous mapping for CN VII was performed in large VS (08/2014 to 11/2017) additionally to standard neurophysiological techniques. A surgical suction-and-mapping probe was used for surgical dissection and continuous monopolar stimulation. Stimulation was performed with 0.05-2 mA intensities (0.3 msec pulse duration, 2.0 Hz). Postoperative CNVII outcome was assessed by the House-Brackmann-Score (HBS) after 1 week and 3 months following surgery. Twenty patients with Koos III (n = 2; 10%) and Koos IV (n = 18; 90%) VS were included. Preoperative HBS was 1 in 19 patients and 2 in 1 patient. Dynamic mapping reliably indicated the facial nerve when resection was close to 5-10 mm. One week after surgery, 7 patients presented with worsening in HBS. At 3 months, 4 patients' facial weakness had resolved and 3 patients (15%) had an impairment of CN VII (HBS 3 and 4). Of the 3 patients, near-total removal was attempted in 2. The continuous dynamic mapping method using an electrified surgical suction device might be a valuable additional tool in surgery of large VS. It provides real-time feedback indicating the presence of the facial nerve within 5-10 mm depending on stimulation intensity and may help in avoiding accidental injury to the nerve.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurosurgery

UniBE Contributor:

Seidel, Kathleen; Zubak, Irena; Rychen, Jonathan; Beck, Jürgen and Raabe, Andreas


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Nicole Söll

Date Deposited:

04 Feb 2019 17:49

Last Modified:

12 Feb 2020 01:30

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Electrical nerve stimulation Facial nerve House-Brackmann score Intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring Motor evoked potential Vestibular schwannoma




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