Objective: Cavernous hemangiomas located within the cavernous sinus are rare vascular tumors that are very difficult to remove because of severe intraoperative bleeding. The purpose of this study was to analyze the clinical, neuroimaging, and pathological features and the surgical treatment of these tumors.
Methods: Ten patients with cavernous hemangiomas in the cavernous sinus who were surgically treated from August 1985 to October 1997, in our hospital, were retrospectively studied.
Results: Among the 10 patients, total tumor removal was performed in four cases, partial removal in two cases, and tumor biopsies in four cases. The four patients who underwent total tumor removal experienced uneventful postoperative courses, with no postoperative neurological deficits for one patient, no new neurological deficits for two patients, and complete ophthalmoplegia and diminished sensation in the distribution of Cranial Nerve V1 for one patient. The two patients who underwent partial removal developed complete ophthalmoplegia and diminished sensation in the distribution of Cranial Nerve V1 after surgery, and one of them experienced contralateral paralysis. All four patients who underwent tumor biopsies experienced severe intraoperative tumor bleeding; one exhibited Cranial Nerve III, IV, and VI injuries after surgery.
Conclusion: The features of prominent hyperintensity in T2-weighted scans, with well-defined borders in enhancing magnetic resonance imaging scans, or marked enhancement in computed tomographic and magnetic resonance imaging scans, with no tumor blush in angiographic analyses, facilitate the diagnosis of these tumors. These tumors can be divided into two subgroups on the basis of intraoperative findings and pathological features. We do not recommend division and piecemeal removal of the tumor during surgery if the main supplies of the tumor have not been interrupted.