Far-lateral approach to the craniocervical junction

Giuseppe Lanzino, Sergio Paolini, Robert F. Spetzler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The far-lateral approach is an extension of the standard suboccipital approach, designed to maximize exposure of the lateroventral craniocervical junction. Following a basic principle of cranial base surgery, the angle of view is increased by bone removal. Bone removal involves the most lateral part of the inferior occipital squama and the posterior arch of C1. Drilling of various portions of the occipital condyle further increases the exposure. Transposition of the vertebral artery is seldom required. The far-lateral approach allows a tangential, unobstructed view of the lateroventral cervicomedullary area and can be applied effectively to manage with a heterogeneous spectrum of pathological lesions involving this area. The technical aspects of the procedure are briefly illustrated in this report.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number4 SUPPL.
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Surgery

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