Stereotactic radiosurgery for trigeminal neuralgia: outcomes and complications.Br J Neurosurg. 2012 Feb; 26(1):45-52.BJ
Stereotactic radiosurgery is one of a number of recognised treatments for the management of trigeminal neuralgia refractory to drug therapy. The reported success of stereotactic radiosurgery in managing patients with trigeminal neuralgia varies in different units from 22 to 75%. This paper reports the outcomes of patients with trigeminal neuralgia who were treated at the National Centre for Stereotactic Radiosurgery in Sheffield, UK. The study reports the outcome of 72 patients treated consecutively between October 2004 and May 2008. Data were collected prospectively by a postal questionnaire sent to patients at 6, 12 and 24 months after treatment. The median age was 65.6 years (39 males: 33 females). Fourteen patients had secondary trigeminal neuralgia (eight multiple sclerosis). Fifteen of the patients included in the study were receiving a second treatment (an initial treatment having improved their pain significantly for at least 6 months). All radiosurgical procedures were performed using a single 4 mm collimator isocenter covering the region of the dorsal root entry zone with a maximal radiation dose of 80 Gy. The percentage of patients defined as having an excellent outcome (pain free without medication) was 39% after 6 months, 36% after 12 months and 64% after 24 months. The percentage of patients who reported being very satisfied with treatment was 71% after 6 months, 57% after 12 months and 53% after 24 months. Half the patients with secondary trigeminal neuralgia were pain free without medication after treatment, and 60% of patients who underwent a second treatment were pain free. A new trigeminal sensory deficit was reported by 31% of patients after radiosurgical treatment.