Object: Cavernous sinus cavernomas are rare lesions associated with high rates of intraoperative mortality and morbidity resulting from profuse bleeding. In this paper, the authors report their experience in treating five patients with histologically confirmed cavernous sinus cavernomas and describe the efficacy of induced hypotension in facilitating excision of the lesion.
Methods: All five patients were women ranging in age from 25 to 54 years, with an average age of 42 years. The mass was small in one and large (>3 cm in diameter) in four. In one patient with a large mass, cardiac arrest occurred after the craniotomy, and remarkable reduction in the size of the cavernoma was evident on postmortem examination. The other three large lesions were successfully removed piecemeal after induction of hypotension (60-80 mm Hg systolic pressure), which remarkably reduced the mass and the bleeding during surgery. In the remaining patient, who had a small lesion, the cavernoma was removed in one piece.
Conclusions: Cavernous sinus cavernoma can be thought of as a cluster of sinusoidal cavities, the size of which varies depending on the systemic blood pressure. During surgery, reduction of the mass and control of bleeding from the cavernoma can be achieved by inducing hypotension, which enables the safe excision of this lesion. This technique should be considered by surgeons resecting a cavernous sinus tumor, especially when cavernoma is suspected.