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The skull base includes the frontal bone, the sphenoid bone, the temporal bone, and the occipital bone. Tumors of the temporal bone and skull base tend to arise in one of three locations: (1) the mastoid or middle ear, (2) the jugular foramen, or (3) the petroclival junction or petrous apex. Tumors of the cerebellopontine angle and Meckel cave are not considered in this chapter (see Chapter 61, Nonacoustic Lesions of the Cerebellopontine Angle). Tumors arising within the skull base are rare and usually cause few symptoms until they grow to a size in which they begin to affect cranial nerves. Table 65–1 lists the various skull base neoplasms and their imaging characteristics.

Table 65–1. Radiographic Appearance of Skull Base Neoplasms.

The majority of skull base tumors are benign and can typically be successfully managed by an otolaryngologist specialized in neurotology and skull base surgery. Surgical approaches to these three areas are numerous, and the nomenclature is confusing. To remove a lesion of the middle ear or mastoid, a mastoidectomy through a postauricular incision or a middle ...

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