Endonasal, transmaxillary, transpterygoid approach to the foramen ovale: radio-anatomical study of surgical feasibility

V E Kantola, G W McGarry, P M Rea
Journal of Laryngology and Otology 2013, 127 (11): 1093-102

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to examine the feasibility of an endonasal, transmaxillary, transpterygoid approach to the foramen ovale by examining key anatomical, radiological and surgical landmarks.

METHOD: Measurements were taken from 183 patients' computed tomography scans using BrainLAB iPlan 1.1 Cranial software. Endoscopic dissection was then carried out on a cadaver to assess surgical viability.

RESULTS: We found that the distances from the posterior maxillary wall to the foramen ovale and from the anterior nasal spine to the foramen ovale were statistically significantly larger in men than women. The distance from the base of the lateral pterygoid plate to the foramen ovale, and the angle between the foramen ovale, the anterior nasal spine and the sphenoid rostrum, were constant between the sexes. The importance of the lateral pterygoid plate in locating the foramen ovale was demonstrated.

CONCLUSION: With the increasing popularity of image guidance and assisted navigation in endoscopic surgery, these findings increase anatomico-radiological understanding of the surgical approach investigated.

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