How EEA Works
The Endoscopic Endonasal Approach (EEA) is an innovative surgical technique used to remove brain tumors and lesions—some as large as softballs—all through the nose. A multidisciplinary team of neurosurgeons, otolaryngologists, ophthalmic surgeons, and spine surgeons at UPMC have developed and refined this technique, and are among the most experienced in the world.
With EEA, surgeons reach tumors and lesions of the skull base and top of the spine directly by operating through the nose and sinuses. A specially designed endoscope provides light and a lens for viewing and transmitting internal images. Highly crafted instruments are used alongside the endoscope for dissection and tumor removal. At UPMC, these surgeries are performed in dedicated, state-of-the-art suites that incorporate sophisticated imaging technology.
What EEA Treats
This minimally invasive approach uses the nose and sinuses as natural corridors to access tumors and lesions in critical areas at the base of the skull or top of the spine. The Endoscopic Endonasal Approach allows surgeons to treat many hard-to-reach tumors, even those once considered "inoperable," without disturbing the face or skull.
The Many Benefits of EEA
EEA offers patients a number of benefits that may improve their quality of life, including: no facial incisions or disfigurement, less trauma to the brain and critical nerves, fewer side effects, and shorter recovery times.
EEA Patient Successes
UPMC surgeons have treated more than 2,000 patients using the Endoscopic Endonasal Approach, and were the first in the world to perform a number of procedures using this technique. Their vast experience with EEA allows UPMC's surgical team to constantly refine their skills and to expand the possible uses for this innovative approach. In addition to its successful use in adults, EEA has proven safe and effective in children. More than 100 children have been treated by UPMC surgeons using the Endoscopic Endonasal Approach—more than at any other neurosurgery center in the world.