Microscope-assisted odontoid resection via submandibular retropharyngeal “key-hole” approach

Dávid Süvegh, Árpád Viola
Orvosi Hetilap 2020, 161 (31): 1302-1306
Our objective is to propose a novel surgical technique, the microscope-assisted odontoid resection via submandibular retropharyngeal "key-hole" approach. The patient suffered a traumatic cervical spine injury due to a motorcycle accident. We removed the upper two-thirds of the CII vertebra's odontoid process along with the cortical fragment causing the medullar compression. With this surgical technique the velopharyngeal insufficiency, occurring at the traditional transoral surgery, is avoidable while the access to the odontoid process is insured. The MRI confirmed ventral injury to the meninges, which increases the risk of wound healing complications and sepsis so along with the high risk of velopharyngeal insufficiency occurring at the transoral surgery, stood in favour of the new method. During the submandibular "key-hole" technique besides the use of tissue-glue, tamponing the meninges damage with multiple layers of viable soft tissue could be performed. The postoperative CT and MR imaging confirmed the complete decompression of the medulla oblongata. The patient's tetraplegic state entirely regressed, and eight months after the surgery he became self-sufficient. From now on, the surgical method we used could be a considerable alternative to the classic transoral transpharyngeal or endoscopic endonasal odontoid resection. Orv Hetil. 2020; 161(31): 1302-1306.

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