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 »  Abstract
 » Objectives
 » Procedure
 »  Video Timeline w...
 » Outcome
 » Pearl and Pitfalls
 » Discussion
 » Conclusion
 »  References
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Table of Contents    
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 70  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 515-519

Transcallosal Suprachoroidal Approach for a Small Third Ventricular Colloid Cyst

Department of Neurosurgery and Gamma-Knife, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Date of Submission05-Dec-2021
Date of Decision31-Dec-2021
Date of Acceptance17-Jan-2022
Date of Web Publication3-May-2022

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Shashwat Mishra
Department of Neurosurgery and Gamma-Knife, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi - 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0028-3886.344613

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 » Abstract 

Background and Introduction: The interhemispheric transcallosal approach provides an elegant pathway to access the lesions of the third ventricle. However, every step of this approach is fraught with hazards which must be negotiated delicately. A comprehensive knowledge of surgical anatomy coupled with technical skill is necessary for optimum surgical results. Objective: This video aims to address the surgical nuances of the suprachoroidal transcallosal approach while accessing the lesions around the foramen of Monro in the anterior and middle part of the third ventricle. Surgical Technique: A 16-year-old boy presented with worsening headaches with episodes of speech arrest and blank stare for 6 years, which had become more frequent over the past 4–5 months. Radiology showed a subcentimeteric colloid cyst at the foramen of monro. A transcallosal corridor was used to reach the foramen of monro, and the suprachoroidal access was adopted to uncover the colloid cyst and excise it completely preserving the deep veins. Results: The patient had uneventful recovery and radiology showed complete excision of the cyst. Conclusion: Transcallosal approach, being minimally invasive, exploits the natural extra-axial corridor (interhemispheric) obviating the need for a cortical incision. The suprachoroidal approach mitigates the risks of thalamostriate vein injury, basal ganglia stroke, and hemiparesis.

Keywords: Corpus callosotomy, interhemispheric, suprachoroidal, transcallosal, venous angle
Key Message: The transcallosal interhemispheric suprachoroidal approach accesses the anterior and middle part of the third ventricle via an incision through the taenia fornicis.

How to cite this article:
S. Rai HI, Mishra S, Sahu R, Katiyar V. Transcallosal Suprachoroidal Approach for a Small Third Ventricular Colloid Cyst. Neurol India 2022;70:515-9

How to cite this URL:
S. Rai HI, Mishra S, Sahu R, Katiyar V. Transcallosal Suprachoroidal Approach for a Small Third Ventricular Colloid Cyst. Neurol India [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Jun 25];70:515-9. Available from: https://www.neurologyindia.com/text.asp?2022/70/2/515/344613

Greenwood first described the anterior transcallosal approach for accessing the third ventricle in 1949. The deep and central location of the third ventricle and the anatomical complexity of the structures surrounding it can make it challenging to access it safely. The variations in the parasagittal cortical venous anatomy can also pose difficulties during initial part of the transcallosal approach.[1] The natural history of colloid cysts is frequently ominous as they can cause acute obstructive hydrocephalus, sudden neurological deterioration, and even death.[2] Even small colloid cysts in strategic locations around the foramen of Monro (FoM) can be symptomatic. Various approaches to the anterior and middle third ventricle have been described with regard to the venous variations and tumor extent [Table 1].[1],[3],[4]
Table 1 Various approaches to the anterior and middle parts of the third ventricle

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 » Objectives Top

Compared to the transcortical approach, the transcallosal approach to the third ventricle is technically more demanding. A safe surgical strategy and its execution require avoidance of complications, the most worrisome of which include interruption of major venous structures and trauma to eloquent cortex. In this video, we highlight various steps to overcome these challenges.

 » Procedure Top

The patient was placed supine with the head in neutral position, elevated and flexed 15–20 degrees, and fixed in a skull clamp [Figure 1]. The midline and coronal suture line were marked. A 7–8 cm linear skin incision crossing the midline but eccentric to the right was marked parallel to and 1 cm anterior to coronal suture [Figure 2]. A right sided 4 × 3 cm parasagittal craniotomy (⅔ anterior and ⅓ posterior to coronal suture) exposing the SSS was fashioned. At this stage, a microscope was brought in to complete a durotomy based on the SSS. Dura was reflected with tack up sutures taking care of the underlying cortical veins. After gentle brain retraction and arachnoid dissection, callosomarginal and pericallosal arteries were mobilized to their respective sides. A whitish corpus callosum was identified and the right lateral ventricle was entered after callosotomy (around 1 cm) [Figure 3].[5] The anatomy of the roof of the third ventricle, FoM, and deep venous system was defined [Figure 4]. Teniae fornicis was incised, and the choroid plexus was mobilized laterally to expose the colloid cyst via the suprachoroidal approach preventing injury to the deep veins [Figure 5].[3] The cyst was excised completely along with its capsule.
Figure 1: Positioning: the patient is placed supine with the head in neutral position, elevated and flexed 15–20 degrees, and fixed in a skull clamp

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Figure 2: Skin incision (black dotted line) and craniotomy (blue dotted line)

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Figure 3: Anterior interhemispheric corridor showing the branches of anterior cerebral arteries and corpus callosum

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Figure 4: Anatomy of the roof of third ventricle

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Figure 5: Anatomy of the venous angle and suprachoroidal corridor

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Video link: https://youtu.be/gBj8ihAdWt0

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 » Video Timeline with Audio Transcript Top

0.00–0.13 min: A 16-year-old boy presented with features of raised ICP intermittently and focal seizures for the past 6 years; however, he was neurologically intact.

0.13–0.44 min: Noncontrast CT scan of the head shows a small hyperdense lesion in the anterior–superior third ventricle without hydrocephalus. The same lesion is, however, not visible on contrast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain, which shows the importance of obtaining thin sections when looking for diminutive colloid cysts. Sagittal T2 MRI is very important for locating the parasagittal cortical draining veins shown with yellow arrows for planning the craniotomy.

0.44–1.03 min: The positioning is supine, with head maintained in neutral position with mild flexion. The suture line is parallel to the coronal suture. A 4 × 3 cm right-sided craniotomy is made across the midline exposing the superior sagittal sinus, as shown in the illustration.

1.03–1.43 min: 3 × 2.5 cm Durotomy is performed taking care to avoid injuring the cortical draining veins, and dural tack up sutures are placed. The draining vein is mobilized off from the dura using a microscope under high magnification. The illustration shows another way of protecting the cortical vein if it has a prolonged intradural course en route to the venous sinus. The plane of sharp dissection with microscissors is biased toward the dural surface to avoid venous injury.

1.43–2.15 min: The SSS is retracted contralaterally by pulling the tack up sutures taut. The interhemispheric fissure is opened up by dissecting the arachnoid utilizing the full extent of durotomy. The arachnoid dissection is carried out between the ACA branches, that is, the callosomarginal and the pericallosal arteries, and they are dissected off extensively in antero–posterior direction to allow atraumatic mobilization.

2.15–2.26 min: The arteries are dissected and retracted laterally, and corpus callosum is visible.

2.26–2.44 min: Navigation is used to mark the most appropriate callosotomy site. Around a centimeter long callosotomy is done using bipolar cautery. The size of the retractor blade serves as a rough guide.

2.44–2.52 min: The body of the right lateral ventricle is entered and the choroid plexus is visible.

2.52–3.04 min: The choroid plexus is followed anteriorly to locate the FoM, where it disappears as it turns medially to form the roof of the third ventricle.

3.04–3.12 min: The deep veins and fornix are identified.

3.12–3.36 min: The attachment of the choroid plexus to the ASV is dissected preserving the vein itself. A glimpse of the cyst is now visible behind the choroid plexus.

3.36–3.50 min: The illustration in the inset shows the variations of the venous angle and the free space available to expand the FoM posteriorly while remaining clear of the deep veins.

3.50–4.16 min: In this suprachoroidal approach, the attachment of the choroid plexus to the fornix known as Teniae fornicis is divided using sharp scissors avoiding any injury to fornix and exposing the colloid cyst beneath it.

4.16–4.48 min: The wall of the colloid cyst is dissected off from the surrounding neural tissue and venous structures. The cyst is then removed in toto.

4.48–5.14 min: The picture describes the anatomy in further detail showing the venous angle formed by TSV, which in this case is Type 1B (as per Ture et al.) as the ASV–ICV Junction is posterior to the FOM level. The FOM is expanded after dividing the Teniae fornicis exposing the suprachoroidal corridor [Figure 6].
Figure 6: Venous angle. Type IA: true venous angle with ASV joining at the angle which lies adjacent to the posterior margin of the FoM. Type IB: true venous angle with ASV joining the main stem of ICV far beyond the FoM. Type IIA: false venous angle with ASV joining at the angle which lies far beyond the FoM. Type IIB: false venous with ASV joining the main stem of ICV. Yellow area shows the space available to access the mid-superior third ventricle via transchoroidal approach expanding the FoM posteriorly. The more posterior the venous angle and its junction of ASV, more the corridor to access the midsuperior third ventricle. (ASV: anterior septal vein, BVR: basal vein of Rosenthal, FoM: foramen of Monro, ICV: internal cerebral vein, TSV: thalamostriate vein, VoG: vein of Galen)

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5.14–5.18 min: The area is explored to look for any residual cyst.

5.18–5.28 min: Postoperative CT head shows complete excision and no hydrocephalus.

5.28–-5.36 min: Postoperative MRI brain shows no residual and open bilateral FOM.

5.36–5.48 min: The patient was extubated after surgery on table and shifted to the ICU. He had no neurological deficits and was discharged day 4 after surgery. His headache improved on follow-up.

 » Outcome Top

The postoperative course was uneventful. The patient was discharged on post-op day 4 without any neurological deficits.

 » Pearl and Pitfalls Top

  • Sagittal T2W MRI, magnetic resonance venography (MRV), and frameless stereotaxy are the adjuncts that help to plan craniotomy and operative corridor staying clear of parasagittal cortical draining veins and guiding access to the ventricle. A more posterior craniotomy may endanger the motor cortex, and there is a relative abundance of cortical veins in this area.
  • Generally, the nondominant side is the preferred side for surgery. However, the more posterior location of venous angle (which lets the surgeon enlarge the FoM posteriorly) is a more important factor to decide which FoM to operate upon. Venous angle is the posterior limit of enlargement of FoM. So, a preoperative MRV is strongly recommended.
  • When posterior enlargement of FoM is prevented by a Type IA venous angle, ASV sacrifice is safer than that of TSV.
  • The durotomy is started at a paramedian location and enlarged toward the midline with a no. 15 blade in short careful steps to avoid injury to the bridging veins or the venous lacunae. A triangular protective patch of dura should be left over the bridging veins, which become intradural en route to the SSS.
  • Bleeding from an injured cortical vein should be stopped with a small piece of gelfoam and not to be coagulated as it may lead to venous infarct.
  • Arachnoid dissection should be extensive along the length of interhemispheric space, which allows the cingulate gyri, frequently adherent to each other, to fall away from each other atraumatically. The arachnoid around the callosomarginal and pericallosal arteries should be dissected thoroughly to mobilize them to the sides.
  • The callosotomy should be biased toward one pericallosal artery to direct entry toward the preferred lateral ventricle.
  • Ventriculostomy should be done in cases of hydrocephalus to prevent intraoperative brain bulge and achieve atraumatic development of the interhemispheric surgical corridor.
  • Do not confuse corpus callosum (white hypovascular) with cingulate gyrus (cortical pial color with vascularity).
  • Absolute hemostasis at all stages of surgery precludes a ventricular catheter placement.

 » Discussion Top

The transcallosal approach allows us to approach the anterior and middle part of the third ventricle via the natural anatomical planes of the brain (interhemispheric) with minimal brain incision and retraction. It also allows good visualization of contralateral FoM via septostomy.[3] The knowledge of various anatomical landmarks (choroid plexus, venous angle, fornix, etc.) is of utmost importance. The cognitive function is better preserved in the transcallosal approach vs transcortical approach.[6] A relaxed brain is an absolute prerequisite for this approach. A more posterior location of the venous angle and ASV-ICV junction relative to FoM provides more space to access the mid-superior position of the third ventricle via the transchoroidal approach.

 » Conclusion Top

The current video focuses on the applied anatomy around the third ventricle and operative nuances of the transcallosal suprachoroidal approach to the anterior–middle third ventricle.

Patient's consent

A full and detailed consent from the patient/guardian has been taken. The patient's identity has been adequately anonymized. If anything related to the patient's identity is shown, adequate consent has been taken from the patient/relative/guardian. The journal will not be responsible for any medico-legal issues arising out of issues related to patient's identity or any other issues arising from the public display of the video.


The authors hereby certify that the work shown here is genuine, original, and not submitted anywhere, either in part or full. They transfer the full rights of the video to Neurology India. All the necessary permissions from the patient, hospital, and institution have been taken for submitting this video to Neurology India.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 » References Top

Wen HT, Rhoton AL, de Oliveira E. Transchoroidal approach to the third ventricle: An anatomic study of the choroidal fissure and its clinical application. Neurosurgery 1998;42:1205-17.  Back to cited text no. 1
Beaumont TL, Limbrick DD, Rich KM, Wippold FJ, Dacey RG. Natural history of colloid cysts of the third ventricle. J Neurosurg 2016;125:1420-30.  Back to cited text no. 2
Türe U, Yaşargil MG, Al-Mefty O. The transcallosal—transforaminal approach to the third ventricle with regard to the venous variations in this region. J Neurosurg 1997;87:706-15.  Back to cited text no. 3
Cohen-Gadol AA. Interhemispheric transcallosal route for resection of anterior third ventricular lesions. Neurosurg Focus 2013;34 (1 Suppl):Video 7. doi: 10.3171/2013.V1.FOCUS12340.  Back to cited text no. 4
Woiciechowsky C, Vogel S, Lehmann R, Staudt J. Transcallosal removal of lesions affecting the third ventricle: An anatomic and clinical study anatomical report: 117. Neurosurgery 1995;36:117-23.  Back to cited text no. 5
Geffen G, Walsh A, Simpson D, Jeeves M. Comparison of the effects of transcortical and transcallosal removal of intraventricular tumors. Brain 1980;103:773-88.  Back to cited text no. 6


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4], [Figure 5], [Figure 6]

  [Table 1]


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