Skull Base Surgery
Skull Base Surgery
The base of the skull is made up of bones and cartilage that support the brain and form the eye sockets, nose cavity, parts of the sinus, and inner ear. This complex area is where the brain, spinal cord, nerves, and blood vessels converge, making skull base surgery very delicate. Skull base tumors and diseases can affect the brain, vision, hearing, strength, balance, sensation, and coordination if not properly treated.
Augusta University’s Skull Base Surgery Center provides comprehensive treatment of benign and malignant tumors of the skull base with a focus on patient safety and minimally invasive approaches. We treat adult and pediatric patients from across the Southeast with state of the art, multidisciplinary treatment options tailored for each person’s needs.
Why Choose Us
Augusta University Health’s Skull Base Surgery Center is the only integrated, multidisciplinary program to serve Augusta, Georgia and the surrounding area with decades of experience and cutting-edge treatments. We offer:
- Advanced procedures: We are experts in minimally invasive endoscopic skull base surgery, a technology that has revolutionized the management of many types of skull base tumors allowing surgeons to remove tumors that were once inoperable.
- Multidisciplinary team: Our team includes fellowship trained skull base surgeons in the fields of otolaryngology, neurosurgery, ophthalmology, and oncology to deliver care for skull base tumors and disorders.
- Specialized surgeries: Every patient is unique. We customize care with surgeons who are specially trained in performing procedures to treat each patient’s specific need.
Skull based surgery teams
Our trained surgeons have gone through additional fellowship training in minimally invasive specialized surgeries, including:
- Anterior (Endoscopic) Skull Base Surgery: The otolaryngologist and neurosurgeon work together through an endoscopic approach via the nostrils to access the base of the skull through the sinuses. Our anterior skull base team includes Drs. Byrd, Kountakis, Li, Rahimi, Reyes, Rutkowski, and Vender.
- Lateral Skull Base Surgery: For tumors that involve the bone around the ear or inner ear, the otolaryngologist carefully removes the bone around the inner ear structures to provide access to the brainstem. The lateral skull base team includes Drs. Seyyedi, Rahimi, Rutkowski, and Vender.
- Open Neurosurgery: Drs. Rahimi, Rutkowski and Vender specialize in tumor surgery through the skull that can be used in addition to minimally invasive approaches.
- Head and Neck Cancer Surgery: Augusta University Health partners with the Georgia Cancer Center (GCC) to treat cancers of the head and neck. Drs. Byrd, Albergotti, and Groves are head and neck surgeons who present every new cancer patient case to a Multidisciplinary Tumor Board to ensure that they get the best most evidence-based treatment.
- Neuro-ophthalmology: Dr. Dilip Thomas is an ophthalmologist who specializes in oculoplastic surgery and handles cases that are close to the eye or involve vision loss.
Conditions We Treat
We treat patients with many different diseases and disorders affecting the skull base, including:
- Abnormal growths of the base of the skull
- Disorders of the pituitary gland, including pituitary adenomas and Rathke’s cleft cysts
- Brain tumors
- Cerebrospinal fluid leaks
- Cancers of the sinuses, ear and base of skull
- Hemifacial spasm
- Pain disorders, such as trigeminal neuralgia
- Sinus tumors
- Tumors of nerves including schwannomas and neurofibromas
Augusta University’s Skull Base Surgery Team offers a range of surgical options, including:
- Minimally invasive surgery (endoscopic): We are the area leaders in endoscopic endonasal surgeries
- Traditional open surgery: Open skull base surgeries for patients who are not candidates for minimally invasive options
- Radiosurgery: This noninvasive gamma knife procedure focuses radiation on head and neck cancers and brain tumors.
Minimally invasive brain surgery gives teen back her life
It was the summer of 2016 when 17-year-old Taylor Tywon started experiencing migraines, fatigue and nosebleeds. After a year, she had nose bleeds several times a day, along with constant, severe headaches, which made it very difficult to follow her normal routine and focus on her high school classes.