Orbital Schwannoma—Management and Clinical Outcomes
To evaluate the clinical features, management, and outcomes of orbital schwannomas.
Retrospective study analyzing 20 orbital schwannomas in 18 patients managed in an orbital service over 26 years. Clinical, radiological, histological, and surgical procedural data were analyzed.
Mean age of the study population was 40.89 ± 20.84 years. The most common nerve of origin was frontal nerve (50%), and majority of patients (70%) had a superior and/or posteriorly located tumor. Five patients (27.8%) had optic neuropathy at presentation, and 3 of them showed improved vision after intervention. Surgical resection was performed for all except for 1 patient who underwent fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy. Six subjects had extension of tumor into the cavernous sinus, and 3 of them underwent combined neurosurgical intervention with stereotactic neuronavigation. Outcomes were largely favorable with majority achieving complete excision. Two out of 6 incomplete resections experienced regrowth requiring second surgical intervention. Surgical complications include decreased vision, diplopia, ptosis, and mydriasis.
Orbital schwannomas are uncommon slow-growing tumors which can result in visual loss. Prognosis can be favorable even in presence of pre-operative optic neuropathy if there is early intervention. Schwannomas confined to the orbit can usually be completely excised with good outcomes. Schwannomas extending intra-cranially may undergo incomplete excision to preserve vital structures, leaving residual disease, but generally have satisfactory results. Stereotactic neuronavigation and frozen section are useful intra-operative tool to aid management and minimize complications. Fractionated radiotherapy can be considered as an alternative or adjunctive treatment for patients not amenable for surgical resections