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Neurosurgery. 2011 Sep;69(3):533-9; discussion 539. doi: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e318218db23.

Stereotactic radiosurgery yields long-term control for benign intradural, extramedullary spinal tumors.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, Stanford University Cancer Center, Stanford, California, USA.



The role of stereotactic radiosurgery in the treatment of benign intracranial lesions is well established. Although a growing body of evidence supports its role in the treatment of malignant spinal lesions, a much less extensive dataset exists for treatment of benign spinal tumors.


To examine the safety and efficacy of stereotactic radiosurgery for treatment of benign, intradural extramedullary spinal tumors.


From 1999 to 2008, 87 patients with 103 benign intradural extramedullary spinal tumors (32 meningiomas, 24 neurofibromas, and 47 schwannomas) were treated with stereotactic radiosurgery at Stanford University Medical Center. Forty-three males and 44 females had a median age of 53 years (range, 12-86). Twenty-five patients had neurofibromatosis. Treatment was delivered in 1 to 5 sessions (median, 2) with a mean prescription dose of 19.4 Gy (range, 14-30 Gy) to an average tumor volume of 5.24 cm (range, 0.049-54.52 cm).


After a mean radiographic follow-up period of 33 months (range, 6-87), including 21 lesions followed for ≥ 48 months, 59% were stable, 40% decreased in size, and a single tumor (1%) increased in size. Clinically, 91%, 67%, and 86% of meningiomas, neurofibromas, and schwannomas, respectively, were symptomatically stable to improved at last follow-up. One patient with a meningioma developed a new, transient myelopathy at 9 months, although the tumor was smaller at last follow-up.


As a viable alternative to microsurgical resection, stereotactic radiosurgery provides safe and efficacious long-term control of benign intradural, extramedullary spinal tumors with a low rate of complication.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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