3D modeling-based surgical planning in transsphenoidal pituitary surgery--preliminary results

Acta Otolaryngol. 2008 Sep;128(9):1011-8. doi: 10.1080/00016480701805489.


Conclusion: The preoperative three-dimensional (3D) modeling of the pituitary adenoma together with pituitary gland, optic nerves, carotid arteries, and the sphenoid sinuses was adopted for routine use in our institution for all pituitary surgery patients. It gave the surgeon a more profound orientation to the individual surgical field compared with the use of conventional 2D images only.

Objective: To demonstrate the feasibility of 3D surgical planning for pituitary adenoma surgery using readily available resources.

Subjects and methods: The computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data of 40 consecutive patients with pituitary adenoma were used to construct 3D models to be used in preoperative planning and during the surgery. A freely available, open source program (3D Slicer) downloaded to a conventional personal computer (PC) was applied.

Results: The authors present a brief description of the 3D reconstruction-based surgical planning workflow. In addition to the preoperative planning the 3D model was used as a 'road map' during the operation. With the 3D model the surgeon was more confident when opening the sellar wall and when evacuating the tumor from areas in contact with vital structures than when using only conventional 2D images.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Adenoma / pathology
  • Adenoma / surgery*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Endoscopy / methods*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Neurological
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / pathology
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Surgery, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Young Adult