Long term results of primary radiosurgery for vestibular schwannomas
Stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) has become a primary option for management for both newly diagnosed vestibular schwannomas (VS), as well as VS that enlarge after initial observation.
A retrospective review of our prospectively maintained data base found 871 patients who underwent Gamma knife® SRS as their initial (primary) management between 1987 and 2008. Follow-up ranged from 1–25 years (median = 5.2 years) Median tumor volume was 0.9 cc (0.02–36) and median margin dose was 13 Gy (12–25).
Progression free survival (PFS) after SRS was 97% at 3 years, 95% at 5 years, and 94% at 10 years. Freedom from delayed surgical resection was found in 98.7% of patients. Smaller tumor volume was significantly associated with improved PFS. There were 326 patients with serviceable hearing (Gardner–Robertson 1 or 2) at the time of SRS with audiological follow-up of ≥ 1 year. Serviceable hearing preservation rates after SRS were 89.8% at 1 year, 76.9% at 3 years, 68.4% at 5 years, 62.5% at 7 years, and 51.4% at 10 years. Factors associated with improved serviceable hearing preservation included younger age, Gardner-Robertson grade 1 at SRS, and absence of subjective complaints of dysequilibrium or vertigo (vestibulopathy). Fifty-one patients (5.8%) developed trigeminal neuropathy. Fourteen (1.6%) developed a transient House-Brackmann grade 2 or 3 facial neuropathy.
In this report with extended follow-up, primary SRS achieved tumor growth control in 94% of patients. Optimization of long- term cranial nerve outcomes remains an important achievement of this management strategy for VS.
KeywordsAcoustic neuroma: Gamma knife Stereotactic radiosurgery Vestibular schwannoma hearing
The work described in this report was funded by a research Grant to Dr. Kano from AB Elekta, Stockholm, Sweden.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors other than HK declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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