About Skull Base Cancer
Skull base is the area of the skull behind the face and below the brain that may be affected by cancer. Since the skull base is difficult to access, tumors and lesions can be difficult to detect and require advanced surgery for removal. Board-certified head and neck (otolaryngologist) surgeons Drs. Martin Corsten, Yadro Ducic, and Masoud Saman work with patients who have skull base cancer to determine their best treatment options at the Head & Neck Cancer Center of Texas with locations in Dallas, Fort Worth, and Plano. As co-director for the Baylor Neuroscience Center for Skull Base Surgery, Dr. Ducic is one of few surgeons who is experienced in the surgical approaches to safely remove tumors in the skull base. Dr. Saman is skilled in providing both endoscopic and open approached to the skull base to address benign and malignant tumors of this region. Schedule a consultation with us to learn more about surgery for skull base cancer..
"My experience was much better than I expected, Dr Corsten and the entire staff made me feel very comfortable and I am very appreciative ."- A.T. / Office Visit / Aug 14, 2018
"Sophie was very patient regarding my questions and concerns and was a delight to talk to!"- A.T. / Office Visit / Aug 14, 2018
"Always a good experience from check in to check out."- RJ / Office Visit / Aug 14, 2018
"I absolutely am so thankful for my doctor"- Anonymous / Office Visit / Aug 14, 2018
"very pleased"- Anonymous / Office Visit / Aug 14, 2018
Symptoms of a skull base tumor vary based on the type of cancer, as well as the size and specific locations, but some of the most common signs are:
- Hearing loss
- Pressure, pain, or numbness in face
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Trouble breathing
- Vision problems
Surgical approaches for removing tumors in the skull base include anterior craniofacial, facial disassembly, infratemporal fossa, Le Fort, maxillotomy or maxillary swing, orbitocranial, orbitozygomatic, subcranial, transmandibular, and transoral. We also offer minimally invasive techniques using an endoscope. Our surgeons will determine the best technique based on the position and spread of the cancer. In some cases, radiation therapy or radiosurgery may be combined with skull base surgery using a gamma knife or cyberknife. Squamous cell carcinoma in the skull base was previously considered incurable, but new techniques developed by the innovative surgeons of the Head & Neck Cancer Center of Texas mean our patients have more options.
What to Expect
After surgery, patients will be given specific instructions to help their recovery, including what medications should be taken, activity restrictions, and more. Follow-up appointments will be scheduled to assess the patient's recovery and determine if further treatment is needed. Patients should continue to see our doctors regularly even after their cancer has been treated to check for signs of recurrence or other problems.
Plan Your Procedure
Advanced Cancer Treatments
Patients who have been diagnosed with skull base cancer or have symptoms should schedule a consultation at any of our locations of the Head & Neck Cancer Center of Texas. Our skilled surgeons have developed many innovative techniques that allow for more options for a greater chance at recovery.
Dr. Corsten's Publications
- “The Expanded Endonasal Approach to Skull Base Meningiomas” in Midline Skull Base Surgery (2016).
- “The Anteromedial Corridor via the Expanded Endonasal Approach: The “Front Door to Meckel’s Cave” in Endoscopic Approaches to the Paranasal Sinuses and Skull Base (2017).
- “The “Far Medial” (Transcondylar/Transtubercular) Approach to the Inferior Third of the Clivus” in Endoscopic Approaches to the Paranasal Sinuses and Skull Base (2017).
- “Anteromedial Approaches to the Cranial Nerves” in Endoscopic Approaches to the Paranasal Sinuses and Skull Base (2017).
- Yuh, S.J., Woulfe, J., Corsten, M.J., Carrau, R.L., Prevedello, D.M., Kassam, A.B. Diagnostic imaging dilemma of a clival lesion and its clinical management implications. Journal of Neurological Surgery Part B: Skull Base 75(3):177-82, 2014.
- Labib, M.A., Prevedello, D.D., Carrau, R., Kerr, E.E., Naudy, C., Abou-Al Shaar, H., Corsten, M., Kassam, A. A road map to the internal carotid artery in expanded endoscopic endonasal approaches to the skull base. Neurosurgery 10(Supp 3):448-71, 2014.
- Houlden, D., Turgeon, C., Polis, T., Sinclair, J., Coupland, S., Bourque, P., Corsten, M., Kassam, A. Intraoperative flash VEPs are reproducible in the presence of low amplitute EEG. Journal of Clinical Monitoring and Computing) 28(3):275-85, 2014.
- Corsten, M., Kassam, A., Al-Mutairi, D., Carrau, R., Prevedello, D. How I do it: Reverse order bilateral naso-septal flaps for reconstruction of the skull base in endoscopic skull base surgery: a modification to deal with the severe bony septal spur. Laryngoscope 123(1):73-5, 2013.
- Marglani, O., Corsten, M. Malignant oncocytoma of the lacrimal sac with cervical metastasis: case report and literature review. Journal of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery 37(1):E8-11, 2008.
- Corsten, M., Donald, P., Boggan, J., Gadre, A., Gandour-Edwards, R., Nemzek, B. Extra-abdominal fibromatosis (desmoid tumor) arising in the infratemporal fossa. Journal of Skull Base Surgery 8(4): 237-241, 1998.