Endoscopic versus stereotactic biopsies of intracranial lesions involving the ventricles

Marcin Birski, Jacek Furtak, Kamil Krystkiewicz, Julita Birska, Karolina Zielinska, Paweł Sokal, Marcin Rusinek, Dariusz Paczkowski, Lukasz Szylberg, Marek Harat
Neurosurgical Review 2020 August 21
Stereotactic biopsies of ventricular lesions may be less safe and less accurate than biopsies of superficial lesions. Accordingly, endoscopic biopsies have been increasingly used for these lesions. Except for pineal tumors, the literature lacks clear, reliable comparisons of these two methods. All 1581 adults undergoing brain tumor biopsy from 2007 to 2018 were retrospectively assessed. We selected 119 patients with intraventricular or paraventricular lesions considered suitable for both stereotactic and endoscopic biopsies. A total of 85 stereotactic and 38 endoscopic biopsies were performed. Extra procedures, including endoscopic third ventriculostomy and tumor cyst aspiration, were performed simultaneously in 5 stereotactic and 35 endoscopic cases. In 9 cases (5 stereotactic, 4 endoscopic), the biopsies were nondiagnostic (samples were nondiagnostic or the results differed from those obtained from the resected lesions). Three people died: 2 (1 stereotactic, 1 endoscopic) from delayed intraventricular bleeding and 1 (stereotactic) from brain edema. No permanent morbidity occurred. In 6 cases (all stereotactic), additional surgery was required for hydrocephalus within the first month postbiopsy. Rates of nondiagnostic biopsies, serious complications, and additional operations were not significantly different between groups. Mortality was higher after biopsy of lesions involving the ventricles, compared with intracranial lesions in any location (2.4% vs 0.3%, p = 0.016). Rates of nondiagnostic biopsies and complications were similar after endoscopic or stereotactic biopsies. Ventricular area biopsies were associated with higher mortality than biopsies in any brain area.

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