Spinal intradural extramedullary tumors: the value of intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring on surgical outcome

Ran Harel, David Schleifer, Shmuel Appel, Moshe Attia, Zvi R. Cohen, Nachshon Knoller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Nerve sheath tumors and meningiomas account for most intradural extramedullary (IDEM) tumors. These tumors are benign and amenable to complete surgical resection. In recent years, these surgeries are performed with intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring (IONM) in order to minimize neurological injury, but the evidence for the statistical efficacy of this utility is lacking. This paper evaluates IONM benefits in IDEM tumor resection. Data of patients treated surgically for spinal intradural tumors from 1998 to 2003 was previously collected and analyzed. We retrospectively evaluated patients’ charts operated in the years 2011 to 2013. Patients’ medical files were reviewed including radiological examinations and electrophysiological reports. The data was collected and evaluated. Forty-one cases of meningioma or nerve sheath tumor resection surgery were performed in the study period. The surgical results were compared to 70 cases of historical controls. Demographic data was similar in these two groups. Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predicted values of IONM were 75, 100, 100, and 97%, respectively. New neurological deficit rate was evident in 10 and 14% for the study and control groups, respectively (not significant). While IONM predicts neurological deficits with high accuracy level, this study does not suggest that there is a significant global benefit of IONM in these cases. As reported by others, in this series, the rate of new neurological deficits in non-monitored cases is similar to the monitored cases series; hence, IONM role in preventing new neurological deficits has yet to be proven.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)613-619
Number of pages7
JournalNeurosurgical Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2017


  • Intradural tumor
  • Intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring
  • Meningioma
  • Nerve sheath tumor
  • Spine tumor surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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