Objective: Microvascular decompression (MVD) is considered the only etiological treatment for drug-resistant trigeminal neuralgia (TN). Nonetheless, despite the recent technological advances, the risks associated with MVD remain non-negligible. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of using neuronavigation on the surgical outcomes of patients with TN submitted for MVD. Methods: We analyzed 30 consecutive patients (11 men, 19 women) who underwent MVD for TN between January 2019 and December 2019. Patients were divided in 2 groups according to the use of neuronavigation (group A: MVD with neuronavigation; group B: MVD without neuronavigation). The impact of neuronavigation was assessed on the following parameters: craniotomy size, surgical duration, mastoid air cell opening, postoperative cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage and other complications occurrence, and length of hospitalization. The acute pain relief and the Barrow Neurological Institute score at follow-up were used to evaluate the functional outcome. Results: The craniotomy size, the surgical duration, and the CSF leak incidence were significantly reduced in group A compared with group B (P = 0.0009, P = 0.0369, and P = 0.0406, respectively). The incidence of mastoid air cell opening, and the length of hospitalization were reduced in group A compared with group B, although these differences were not statistically significant. We obtained an acute pain relief in all cases, and the Barrow Neurological Institute score at follow-up was significantly reduced (P < 0.0001). Conclusions: Neuronavigation is a useful tool that significantly reduced craniotomy size, surgical duration, and CSF leak incidence in patients with TN submitted for MVD. We advise to routinely implement neuronavigation in this type of surgery.
- Microvascular decompression
- Retrosigmoid approach
- Transverse-sigmoid sinus junction
- Trigeminal neuralgia