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Papers of the Week

2022 May 30

World Neurosurg

Primary intraosseous cavernous hemangioma of the cranium: A systematic review of the literature.


Alexiou GA, Lampros M, Gavra MM, Vlachos N, Ydreos J, Boviatsis EJ
World Neurosurg. 2022 May 30.
PMID: 35654328.


Primary intraosseous cavernous hemangioma (PICH) is a rare, benign tumor of vascular origin, typically arising in the vertebral body. Its presence in the skull is exceedingly rare, with only a few cases being reported worldwide. We carried out the first systematic review of the literature, covering the epidemiology, clinical and imaging features, management, and prognosis of cranial PICH. The literature search revealed 51 studies with 77 patients; the mean age of the patients was 32.7 years with a female predominance of 1.4:1. The majority of cranial PICHs were located in the calvarium, primarly in the frontal and parietal regions, with only a few located in the skull base. The most common initial clinical manifestation was local growth or swelling, followed by a headache. Radiographically, PICHs represented osteolytic, intradiploic masses, which in many cases displayed trabeculations, leading to the so-called "honeycomb" or "starburst" pattern. After contrast administration, PICH typically enhance. Tumor removal, with craniectomy or en-bloc resection and subsequent skull reconstruction, was selected for calvarial PICHs, whereas a transsphenoidal approach, with only partial resection, was applied for clival/sella PICHs. Preoperative embolization, aiming to minimize intraoperative blood loss, was performed in the case of large tumors. At a mean follow-up of 39. months, no patient experienced tumor recurrence, even after subtotal resection (STR). Owing to the benign nature of the tumor, maximal safe resection is recommended as the treatment of choice for patients with cranial PICH.