Low-grade gliomas are slow growing intrinsic lesions that induces a progressive functional reshaping of the brain. Surgical removal of these lesions requires the combined efforts of a multidiscipinary team of neurosurgeon, neuroradiologist, neuropsychologist, neurophysiologist, and neurooncologists that all together contribute in the definition of the location, extension, and extent of functional involvement that a specific lesion has induced in a particular patient. Each tumor has induced particular and specific changes of the functional network, that varies among patients. This requires that each treatment plan should be tailored to the tumor and to the patient. When this is reached, surgery should be accomplished according to functional and anatomical boundaries, and has to aim to the maximal resection with the maximal patient functional preservation. This can be reached at the time of the initial surgery, depending on the functional organization of the brain, or may require additional surgeries, eventually intermingled with adjuvant treatments. The use of so called brain mapping techniques extend surgical indications, improve extent of resection with greater oncological impact, minimization of morbidity and increase in quality of life. To achieve the goal of a satisfactory tumor resection associated with the full preservation of the patients abilities, a series of neuropsychological, neurophysiological, neuroradiological and intraoperative investigations have to be performed. In this chapter, we will describe the rationale, the indications and the modality for performing a safe and rewarding surgical removal of low-grade gliomas by using these techniques, as well as the functional and oncological results.
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