Acta Neurochirurgica

, Volume 156, Issue 4, pp 653–660

Fluorescence-guided surgery in high grade gliomas using an exoscope system

  • José Piquer Belloch
  • Vicente Rovira
  • Jose L. Llácer
  • Pedro A. Riesgo
  • Antonio Cremades
Clinical Article - Neurosurgical Techniques



Fluorescence-guided microsurgical resections of high-grade gliomas using 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) is superior to conventional microsurgery. An optical device, usually a modified microscope, is needed for these procedures. However, an exoscope may be implemented for fluorescence techniques. We present the use of an exoscope to perform tumor resection guided by 5-ALA fluorescence in 21 consecutive patients with high-grade glioma and two neuronavigation-guided biopsies.


Twenty-three patients underwent operations. Tumor volume and localization were quantified with pre- and postoperative volumetric MRI in non-biopsy cases.


In non-biopsy cases, the age range was 20 to 79 years, with a median of 56 (interquartile range = 45-66). Histological analysis indicated that 14 had glioblastoma multiforme, 2 grade-III oligodendrogliomas and 1 anaplastic astrocytoma, 3 metastases and 1 low-grade astrocytoma. Total resection was achieved in 15 cases; subtotal resection was performed in 5 patients. The result was partial resection in one case. There was no perioperative mortality. The median fluorescence intensity, on a scale of 1–5, was 4.5 in the GBM group (IQR = 4-5), 3 (IQR = 2.5-3.5) in anaplastic glioma, and 2.5 (IQR = 2.25-2.75) for oligodendrogliomas. Of the three metastases, one showed fluorescence level 4. As for the two biopsy cases, one was anaplastic astrocytoma and one glioblastoma multiforme. The samples obtained were fluorescent in both cases.


An exoscope can be also used for fluorescence-guided surgery with 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) and neuronavigation-guided biopsy. With an important advantage of low cost, this allows the surgeon to perform collaborative surgeries and adds agility to the procedure.


High-grade glioma, glioblastoma Aminolevulinic acid Fluorescence 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Piquer Belloch
    • 1
  • Vicente Rovira
    • 1
  • Jose L. Llácer
    • 1
  • Pedro A. Riesgo
    • 1
  • Antonio Cremades
    • 2
  1. 1.Neurosurgery Service, Hospital de la RiberaAlziraSpain
  2. 2.Pathology Service, Hospital de la RiberaAlziraSpain

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