Craniotomies without burr holes using an oscillating saw

Francesco DiMeco, K. W. Li, C. Mendola, G. Cantu, C. L. Solero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objective. The object of this study is to describe a new method for performing craniotomies which obviates the need for burr holes, improves bony reconstruction, and reduces post-operative cosmetic deformities. Moreover, this technique provides excellent exposure of skull base structures and dural venous sinuses. Methods. Craniotomies in varied locations are created with the use of a micro-oscillating saw and chisel. No burr holes are used and reconstruction with plates and screws is unnecessary. Results. We initially applied our technique to approaches to the anterior skull base with combined craniofacial tumour resections. We have since performed over 2000 craniotomies of any size and shape in all supratentorial locations using the oscillating saw. Conclusions. We have found that our method creates better cosmetic results than standard techniques and is safer for craniotomies spanning dural venous sinuses. With experience, operating time was significantly reduced and costs were lowered because reconstruction with fixation devices was not needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)995-1001
Number of pages7
JournalActa Neurochirurgica
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2004


  • Craniotome
  • Craniotomy
  • Gigli saw
  • Oscillating saw
  • Skull base surgery
  • Venous sinuses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Surgery


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