Background: Frameless image-guided radiosurgery (IGRS) is a safe and effective noninvasive treatment for trigeminal neuralgia (TN). This study evaluates the use of frameless IGRS to treat patients with refractory TN.

Methods: We reviewed the records of 20 patients diagnosed with TN who underwent frameless IGRS treatments between March 2012 and December 2013. Facial pain was graded using the Barrow Neurological Institute (BNI) scoring system. The initial setup uncertainty from simulation to treatment and the patient intrafraction uncertainty were measured. The median follow-up was 32 months.

Results: All patients' pain was BNI Grade IV or V before the frameless IGRS treatment. The mean intrafraction shift was 0.43 mm (0.28-0.76 mm), and the maximum intrafraction shift was 0.95 mm (0.53-1.99 mm). At last follow-up, 8 (40%) patients no longer required medications (BNI 1 or 2), 11 (55%) patients were pain free but required medication (BNI 3), and 1 (5%) patient had no pain relief (BNI 5). Patients who did not have prior surgery had a higher odds ratio for pain relief compared to patients who had prior surgery (14.9, P = 0.0408).

Conclusions: Frameless IGRS provides comparable dosimetric and clinical outcomes to frame-based SRS in a noninvasive fashion for patients with medically refractory TN.

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Published in Surgical Neurology International, v. 8, p. 87-94.

© 2017 Surgical Neurology International

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