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Arq Neuropsiquiatr. 2019 May 13;77(4):232-238. doi: 10.1590/0004-282X20190027.

Gamma knife radiosurgery for trigeminal neuralgia: first case series from Latin America.

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Instituto de Neurologia de Curitiba, Departamento de Neurocirurgia, Curitiba PR, Brasil.
Instituto de Neurologia de Curitiba, Departamento de Anestesiologia, Curitiba PR, Brasil.
Instituto de Neurologia de Curitiba, Departamento de Gamma Knife, Curitiba PR, Brasil.
Clínica Paranaense de Tumores, Curitiba PR, Brasil.



Gamma Knife® radiosurgery (GKRS) for trigeminal neuralgia is an effective treatment with at least a 50% reduction of pain in 75-95% of patients.


To present the first series of patients treated for trigeminal neuralgia using GKRS in Latin America.


Retrospective analysis. Analysis consisted of time to improvement of symptoms, best Barrow Neurological Institute scale (BNI) score after procedure, time without pain, time to recurrence and post-procedural hypoesthesia.


Nineteen cases of classical trigeminal neuralgia were analyzed and three cases of symptomatic trigeminal neuralgia were described. Mean time from symptom onset to radiosurgery was 99.6 months, and 78.9% of patients had undergone invasive procedures before treatment. Patients were followed for a mean of 21.7 months. BNI I was achieved in 36.8%, IIIa in 21.1%, IIIb in 21.1%, IV in 5.3% and V in 15.7%. New hypoesthesia developed in 12.1% patients, which was associated with achieving BNI I after the procedure (p < 0.05). Time from diagnosis to GKRS was higher in patients who failed to achieve BNI I (143 vs. 76 months). The distance from the root entry zone in patients who achieved BNI I was greater than patients who did not (1.94 vs. 1.14 mm). Mean distance from the root entry zone in patients with new hypoesthesia was 2.85 mm vs. 1.06 mm (p = 0.06).


Clinical response to GKRS is related to the time between diagnosis and procedure, thus its indication should be considered early in the management of these patients.

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