BACKGROUND: Minimally invasive surgery for neoplasms of the anterior skull base has revolutionized the treatment of these diseases. The relative effect of endoscopic procedures, however, has not been described in terms of disease-specific and global health-related quality of life (QoL).
METHODS: A single-center longitudinal study was performed of patients undergoing complete endoscopic resection of anterior skull base neoplasms. Patients presenting between October 2009 and September 2010 were enrolled. QoL assessments were based on the 22-question Sinonasal Outcomes Test (SNOT-22), Health Utilities Index Mark II (HUI-2), and Short-Form 12 (SF-12) and were completed preoperatively and at 3, 6, and 12 months postoperatively. Comparisons over time were made within subjects.
RESULTS: Fourteen patients were enrolled; 11 completed preoperative and postoperative assessments (79%). Our cohort consisted of five men and six women; mean age was 55 years. Six patients had malignant tumors; four required adjuvant therapy. SNOT-22 scores were stable or improved in 10 cases (91%), with a significant difference for the cohort (mean, -33 points; p < 0.01). Ten (91%) patients had stable or improved HUI-2 scores (mean utility change, +0.13). SF-12 scores were stable for both mental (p = 0.17) and physical (p = 0.26) components. Mean quality-adjusted life year gain over the study period was 0.07.
CONCLUSION: Complete endoscopic resection of anterior skull base neoplasms is oncologically sound with anecdotal QoL improvements relative to open craniofacial resection. We show positive, quantifiable QoL results with validated global and disease-specific instruments. Additional work will help to improve outcomes in this population and will be used in formal cost-effectiveness analysis.
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