3D exoscopic surgery of lateral skull base

  • Alessia Rubini
  • Stefano Di GioiaEmail author
  • Daniele Marchioni



The aim of the study is to assess whether the 3D exoscopic surgery technique could be used in lateral skull base surgery and if it could ultimately replace the microscope in the future.


This is a retrospective study in which were included 24 patients affected by lateral skull base pathologies, who underwent surgery using the 3D exoscope or the operative microscope at the Department of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery at the University Hospital of Verona. The exoscope and microscope groups each included 12 cases. The feasibility of all the surgical steps solely using the 3D exoscope was evaluated. The exoscope group and microscope group were compared taking into account the following factors: time of the surgery, facial and hearing functions outcomes, as well as the intraoperative and postoperative complications.


No intraoperative complication occurred during all the procedures. Postoperatively, only one minor complication emerged. The average operative time was 289 in the exoscope group and 313 min in the microscope one. No significant statistical differences were identified between the two groups (p > 0.05). The facial and hearing function outcomes were fully comparable.


Our experience demonstrated that the exclusive use of the 3D exoscope, as that of the traditional microscope during lateral skull base surgery, is feasible for all open approaches. The use of the 3D exoscopic technique is very promising for future lateral skull base surgeries.


Lateral skull base Exoscope Exoscope 3D Microscope Translabyrinthine Subtotal petrosectomy Vestibular schwannoma Petrous apex surgery Cholesteatoma 


Author contributions

All of the authors have read and approved the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The present authors have no financial relationship to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alessia Rubini
    • 1
  • Stefano Di Gioia
    • 1
    Email author
  • Daniele Marchioni
    • 1
  1. 1.Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery DepartmentUniversity Hospital of VeronaVeronaItaly

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