Surgery intended to alleviated the compression caused by a Chiari Malformation, and restore the flow of cerebrospinal fluid. While some surgeons prefer a conservative approach to surgery such as a “bone only” decompression or a “Minimally Invasive Subpial Tonsillectomy,” a full decompression usually consists of:
- Craniectomy: removal of part of the sub-occipital skull.
- Laminectomy of C1 (and sometimes C2): removal of the lamina from the vertebra.
- Duraplasty: opening of the dura (the outermost membrane enveloping the brain and spinal cord) and patching it so there is more room.
- Cerebellar Tonsillectomy: removal/cauterization of the cerebellar tonsils.
Note: It is very important that comorbid conditions are investigated prior to Decompression Surgery. Failure to realize certain conditions can lead to post-surgical complications and/or a failed decompression surgery.