Drilling of the clinoid process and tuberculum sella, and optic canal unroofing are important surgical techniques, which may be performed relatively safely by a skilled neurosurgeon.Drilling is a cutting process that uses a drill bit to cut or enlarge a hole of circular cross-section in solid materials. The drill bit is a rotary cutting tool, often multipoint. The bit is pressed against the workpiece and rotated at rates from hundreds to thousands of revolutions per minute. This forces the cutting edge against the workpiece, cutting off chips (swarf) from the hole as it is drilled.
Skull base drilling is a necessary and important element of skull base surgery; however, drilling around vulnerable neurovascular structures has certain risks.