Neurosurgery and spinal surgery may be one of the oldest medical professions and surgical disciplines, practiced by prehistoric Neolithic people. However, the modern profession as we know it today did not develop until the second half of the nineteenth century when it was inaugurated as a distinct specialty of surgical procedures, performed by few general surgeons in limited number of selected centers. In particular, spinal intradural tumor and spinal cord surgery developed slowly and sporadically throughout the years, only recently gaining prominence.
Surgical treatment of spinal intradural tumors has always been a demanding and challenging task for neurosurgeons due to the distinctive clinical and histopathological characteristics of these tumors, as well as their specific surgical anatomy. Hence, up-to-date and state-of-the-art diagnostics and surgical techniques and tools have developed only during the last few decades due to the expansion of operative microscopy, endoscopy, intraoperative neurophysiology, and systems for image-guided surgery. Such techniques and armamentariums enabled not only the most accurate and precise tumor identification, but also safe tumor removal and satisfactory patient recovery, which have considerably diminished the rate and scope of postoperative complications.
In this chapter, historical issues concerned with surgical treatment of spinal intradural tumors, as well as the timeline of spinal cord surgery development and improvements, will be discussed and explained.
History Spinal surgery Intradural tumors Developments
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