The superior ophthalmic vein and tumours of the sellar area

Acta Neurochir (Wien). 1983;68(3-4):195-202. doi: 10.1007/BF01401178.


The venous drainage dynamics of the cavernous sinus were studied by means of 50 carotid angiograms and 18 orbital phlebographies performed on 47 patients with various tumours of the sellar area. Normal blood flow direction in the superior ophthalmic vein (SOV) (from the facial veins into the cavernous sinus) was seen in supra- and small intrasellar tumours, but not in parasellar tumours. In bigger intrasellar tumours and in parasellar tumours the reversed blood flow direction visible in the SOV (from the cavernous sinus into the facial veins) indicated infiltration or compression of the cavernous sinus by tumour. The sign of reversed flow together with CT findings is useful in differential diagnosis and in planning surgical treatment for tumours of the sellar area.

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Craniopharyngioma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Meningeal Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Meningioma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Regional Blood Flow
  • Sella Turcica
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed