Fiber-Optic Intracranial Pressure Monitoring System Using Wi-Fi—An In Vivo Study

Neurosurgery 92:647–656, 2023

Continuous invasive monitoring of intracranial pressure (ICP) is essential in neurocritical care for surveillance and management of raised ICP. Fluid-based systems and strain gauge microsensors remain the current standard. In the past few decades, several studies with wireless monitoring were developed aiming to reduce invasiveness and complications.

OBJECTIVE: To describe a novel Wi-Fi fiber-optic device for continuous ICP monitoring using smartphone in a swine model.

METHODS: Two ICP sensors (wireless prototype and wire-based reference) were implanted in the cerebral parenchyma of a swine model for a total of 120 minutes of continuous monitoring. Every 5 minutes, jugular veins compression was performed to evaluate ICP changes. The experimentation was divided in 3 phases for comparison and analysis.

RESULTS: Phase 1 showed agreement in ICP changes for both sensors during jugular compression and releasing, with a positive and strong Spearman correlation (r = 0.829, P < .001). Phase 2 started after inversion of the sensors in the burr holes; there was a positive and moderately weak Spearman correlation (r = 0.262, P < .001). For phase 3, the sensors were returned to the first burr holes; the prototype behaved similarly to the reference sensor, presenting a positive and moderately strong Spearman correlation (r = 0.669, P < .001).

CONCLUSION: A Wi-Fi ICP monitoring system was demonstrated in a comprehensive and feasible way. It was possible to observe, using smartphone, an adequate correlation regarding ICP variations. Further adaptations are already being developed.

Venous Sinus Stenting for Low Pressure Gradient Stenoses in Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension

Neurosurgery 91:734–740, 2022

Medically refractory idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is frequently treated with venous sinus stenosis stenting with high success rates. Patient selection has been driven almost exclusively by identification of supraphysiological venous pressure gradients across stenotic regions based on theoretical assessment of likelihood of response.

OBJECTIVE: To explore the possibility of benefit in low venous pressure gradient patients.

METHODS: Using a single-center, prospectively maintained registry of patients with IIH undergoing venous stenting, we defined treatment groups by gradient pressures of ≤4, 5 to 8, and >8 mmHg based on the most frequently previously published thresholds for stenting. Baseline demographics, clinical, and neuro-ophthalmological outcomes (including optical coherence tomography and Humphrey visual fields) were compared.

RESULTS: Among 53 patients, the mean age was 32 years and 70% female with a mean body mass index was 36 kg/m2 . Baseline characteristics were similar between groups. The mean change in lumbar puncture opening pressure at 6 months poststenting was similar between the 3 groups (≤4, 5-8, and >8 mmHg; 13.4, 12.9, and 12.4 cmH2 O, P=.47). Papilledema improvement was observed across groups at 6 months (100, 93, and 86, P = .7) as were all clinical symptoms. The mean changes in optical coherence tomography retinal nerve fiber layer (À30, À54, and À104, P = .5) and mean deviation in Humphrey visual fields (60, 64, and 67, P = .5) at 6 weeks were not significantly different.

CONCLUSION: Patients with IH with low venous pressure gradient venous sinus stenosis seem to benefit equally from venous stenting compared with their higher gradient counterparts. Re-evaluation of our restrictive criteria for this potentially vision sparing intervention is warranted. Future prospective confirmatory studies are needed.

External Lumbar Drainage following Traumatic Intracranial Hypertension

Neurosurgery 89:395–405, 2021

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) often results in elevations in intracranial pressure (ICP) that are refractory to standard therapies. Several studies have investigated the utility of external lumbar drainage (ELD) in this setting.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the safety and efficacy of ELD or lumbar puncture with regard to immediate effect on ICP, durability of the effect on ICP, complications, and neurological outcomes in adults with refractory traumatic intracranial hypertension.

METHODS: A systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted beginning with a comprehensive search of PubMed/EMBASE. Two investigators reviewed studies for eligibility and extracted data. The strength of evidence was evaluated using GRADE methodology. Random-effects meta-analyses were performed to calculate pooled estimates.

RESULTS: Nine articles detailing 6 studies (N = 110) were included. There was moderate evidence that ELD has a significant immediate effect on ICP; the pooled effect size was –19.5 mmHg (95% CI –21.0 to –17.9 mmHg). There was low evidence to indicate a durable effect of ELD on ICP up to at least 24 h following ELD. There was low evidence to indicate that ELD was safe and associated with a low rate of clinical cerebral herniation or meningitis. There was very low evidence pertaining to neurological outcomes.

CONCLUSION: Given preliminary data indicating potential safety and feasibility in highly selected cases, the use of ELD in adults with severe TBI and refractory intracranial hypertension in the presence of open basal cisterns and absence of large focal hematoma merits further high-quality investigation; the ideal conditions for potential application remain to be determined.

Acute low-pressure hydrocephalus: a case series and systematic review of 195 patients

J Neurosurg 135:300–308, 2021

Acute low-pressure hydrocephalus (ALPH) is characterized by clinical manifestations of an apparent raised intracranial pressure (ICP) and ventriculomegaly despite measured ICP that is below the expected range (i.e., typically ≤ 5 cm H2O). ALPH is often refractory to standard hydrocephalus intervention protocols and the ICP paradox commonly leads to delayed diagnosis. The aim of this study was to characterize ALPH and develop an algorithm to facilitate diagnosis and management for patients with ALPH.

METHODS EMBASE, MEDLINE, and Google Scholar databases were searched for ALPH cases from its first description in 1994 until 2019. Cases that met inclusion criteria were pooled with cases managed at the authors’ institution. Patient characteristics, presenting signs/symptoms, precipitating factors, temporizing interventions, definitive treatment, and patient outcomes were recorded.

RESULTS There were 195 patients identified, with 42 local and 153 from the literature review (53 pediatric patients and 142 adults). Decreased level of consciousness was the predominant clinical sign. The most common etiologies of hydrocephalus were neoplasm and hemorrhage. While the majority of ALPH occurred spontaneously, 39% of pediatric patients had previously undergone a lumbar puncture. Prior to ALPH diagnosis, 92% of pediatric and 39% of adult patients had a ventricular shunt in situ. The most common temporizing intervention was subatmospheric CSF drainage. The majority of patients underwent a shunt insertion/revision or endoscopic third ventriculostomy as definitive ALPH treatment. Although the mortality rate was 11%, 83% of pediatric and 49% of adult patients returned to their pre-ALPH neurological functional status after definitive treatment. Outcomes were related to both the severity of the underlying neurosurgical disease causing the hydrocephalus and the efficacy of ALPH treatment.

CONCLUSIONS ALPH is an underrecognized variant phenotype of hydrocephalus that is associated with multiple etiologies and can be challenging to treat as it frequently does not initially respond to standard strategies of CSF shunting. With early recognition, ALPH can be effectively managed. A management algorithm is provided as a guide for this purpose.

Changes in intracranial pressure and pulse wave amplitude during postural shifts

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162:2983–2989

Monitoring of intracranial pressure (ICP) and ICP pulse wave amplitude (PWA) is an integrated part of neurosurgery. An increase in ICP usually leads to an increase in PWA. These findings have yet to be replicated during the positional shift from supine to upright, where we only know that ICP decreases. Our main aim is to clarify whether the positional shift also results in a change in pulse wave amplitude.

Method Our database was retrospectively reviewed for subjects having had a standardized investigation of positional ICP. In all subjects, mean ICP and PWA were determined with both an automatic and a manual method and compared using Student’s t test. Finally, ICP and PWA were tested for correlation in both in supine and upright position.

Results The study included 29 subjects. A significant change in ICP (Δ14.1 mmHg, p < 0.01) and no significant change in PWA (Δ0.4 mmHg, p = 0.06) were found. Furthermore, a linear correlation between ICP and PWA was found in both supine and upright positions (p < 0.01).

Conclusions We found that during the positional shift from supine to upright, ICP is reduced while PWA remains unaffected. This indicates that the pressure-volume curve is shifted downward according to a hydrostatic pressure offset, while the slope of the curve does not change. In addition, the correlation between ICP and PWA in both supine and upright position validates the previous research on the matter.

Single center experiences with telemetric intracranial pressure measurements in patients with CSF circulation disturbances

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162:2487–2497

Hydrocephalus may present with heterogeneous signs and symptoms. The indication for its treatment and the optimal drainage in complex cases may be challenging. Telemetric intracranial pressure measurements (TICPM) may open new perspectives for those circumstances. We report our experiences using the Neurovent-P-tel and the Sensor Reservoir in a retrospective study.

Methods A series of 21 patients (age range 10–39.5 years) treated in our Pediatric Neurosurgical Unit receiving a TICPM was analyzed. In 8 patients, a Neurovent-P-Tel was implanted; 13 patients received a Sensor Reservoir, 6 of which as a stand-alone implant, while 7 were already shunted. TICPM were performed on an outpatient basis. Possible complications, follow-up surgeries, and TICPM were analyzed.

Results Concerning the complications, one infection was seen in each group and one postoperative seizure was observed in the Ptel group. TICPM-assisted shunt adjustments lead to clinical improvements in six patients in the P-tel group and six patients in the Sensor Reservoir group. In four out of six non-shunted patients, TICPMcontributed to the indication toward shunt implantation.

Conclusions TICPM seems to be a promising tool to improve clinical management of shunted patients with complex hydrocephalus. The two available systems will need further technical improvements, concerning implantation time, measurements, and data analysis in order to optimize handling and interpretation of the data.

Failed Foramen Magnum Decompression in Chiari I Malformation Is Associated With Failure to Restore Normal Intracranial Compliance

Neurosurgery 86:E552–E557, 2020

The standard treatment for symptomatic Chiari malformation (CM) I is foramen magnum decompression (FMD) to facilitate cerebral spinal fluid flow through the foramen magnum, improve intracranial compliance, and alleviate symptoms (commonly headache). This procedure has a variable success rate, with a significant proportion of patients having persistent symptoms after surgery.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate intracranial pressure (ICP) hydrodynamics in symptomatic surgery-naïve patients with CM I and symptomatic patients who have had prior FMD.

METHODS: We undertook a retrospective, observational cohort study, extracting data from our departmental ICP database. Patients with untreated (“Virgin”) Chiari malformations (VCM), patients with previous “failed” FMD (ie, with persistent classical Chiari symptoms) (fFMD) and a normal control group, all with existing continuous ICP monitoring date were included. Median ICP (mICP) and median pulse amplitude (mPA) were compared between the groups.

RESULTS: A total of 33 CM patients (22 VCM and 11 fFMD) and 42 normal controls were included for analysis. mICP did not differ significantly between the normal control, VCM, and fFMD groups. mPA in the VCM and fFMD groups was significantly higher than the control group (P< .01 and P< .05, respectively).

CONCLUSION: In this cohort, patients with persistent symptoms after FMD have persistently impaired intracranial compliance, similar to patients who have not undergone surgery at all when compared with a control group. The reasons for this are not clear, and further research is required to establish the causation and optimum management for failed FMD.

Coupling of CSF and sagittal sinus pressure in adult patients with pseudotumour cerebri

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162: 1001–1009

Pseudotumour cerebri syndrome (PTCS including idiopathic intracranial hypertension) is characterised by the symptoms and signs of raised cerebrospinal fluid pressure (CSFp) in the absence of ventricular dilatation or an intracranial mass lesion. Its aetiology is unknown in the majority of cases but there is much evidence for impaired CSF absorption. Traditionally, sagittal sinus pressure has been considered to be independent of CSF pressure in adults. However, the discovery of stenoses of intracranial venous sinuses and introduction of venous sinus stenting has highlighted the importance of the venous drainage in PTCS. In this study, we have explored the relationship between CSFp and SSp before and during a CSF infusion test and during CSF drainage.

Materials and methods Ten patients (9 females:1 male) with PTCS underwent infusion studies in parallel with direct retrograde cerebral venography. Both SSp and CSFp were recorded at a baseline and during CSFp elevation in a course of a CSF infusion test. The drainage of CSF after the CSF infusion was performed in 7 patients. In 5 cases, jugular venous pressure was also measured.

Results CSFp and SSp including their amplitudes correlated significantly and strongly both at baseline (R = 0.96; p = 0.001) and during infusion (R = 0.92; p = 0.0026). During drainage, this correlation was maintained until SSp reached a stable value, whereas CSFp continued to decrease.

Conclusions In this series of ten patients with PTCS, CSFp and SSp were coupled, both at baseline and during infusion. The implications of such coupling for the calculation of CSF outflow resistance are discussed.

Comparison of the CSF dynamics between patients with idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus and healthy volunteers

J Neurosurg 131:1018–1023, 2019

Intracranial pressure (ICP), outflow resistance (R out ), and amplitude of cardiac-related ICP pulsations (AMPs) are established parameters to describe the CSF hydrodynamic system and are assumed, but not confirmed, to be disturbed in idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (INPH). The aim of this study was to compare the CSF hydrodynamic profile between patients with INPH and healthy volunteers.

METHODS Sixty-two consecutive INPH patients (mean age 74 years) and 40 healthy volunteers (mean age 70 years) were included. Diagnosis was made by two independent neurologists who assessed patients’ history, neurological status, and MRI studies. A CSF dynamic investigation through the lumbar route was performed: ICP and other CSF dynamic variables were blinded to the neurologists during the diagnostic process and were not used for establishing the diagnosis of INPH.

RESULTS R out was significantly higher in INPH (R out 17.1 vs 11.1; p < 0.001), though a substantial number of INPH subjects had normal R out . There were no differences between INPH patients and controls regarding ICP (mean 11.5 mm Hg). At resting pressure, there was a trend that AMP in INPH was increased (2.4 vs 2.0 mm Hg; p = 0.109). The relationship between AMP and ICP was that they shared the same slope, but the curve was significantly shifted to the left for INPH (reduced P 0 [p < 0.05]; i.e., higher AMP for the same ICP).

CONCLUSIONS This study established that the CSF dynamic profile of INPH deviates from that of healthy volunteers and that INPH should thus be regarded as a disease in which intracranial hydrodynamics are part of the pathophysiology.

Clinical trial registration no.: NCT01188382 (

Twenty-Five Years of Intracranial Pressure Monitoring After Severe Traumatic Brain Injury: A Retrospective, Single-Center Analysis

Neurosurgery, Volume 85, Issue 1, July 2019, Pages E75–E82

Intracranial pressure (ICP) is a clinically important variable after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and has been monitored, along with clinical outcome, for over 25 yr in Addenbrooke’s hospital, Cambridge, United Kingdom. This time period has also seen changes in management strategies with the implementation of protocolled specialist neurocritical care, expansion of neuromonitoring techniques, and adjustments of clinical treatment targets.

OBJECTIVE: To describe the changes in intracranial monitoring variables over the past 25 yr.

METHODS: Data from 1146 TBI patients requiring ICP monitoring were analyzed. Monitored variables included ICP, cerebral perfusion pressure (CPP), and the cerebral pressure reactivity index (PRx). Data were stratified into 5-yr epochs spanning the 25 yr from 1992 to 2017.

RESULTS: CPP increased sharply with specialist neurocritical care management (P < 0.0001) (introduction of a specific TBI management algorithm) before stabilizing from 2000 onwards. ICP decreased significantly over the 25 yr of monitoring from an average of 19 to 12 mmHg (P < 0.0001) but PRx remained unchanged. The mean number of ICP plateau waves and the number of patients developing refractory intracranial hypertension both decreased significantly. Mortality did not significantly change in the cohort (22%).

CONCLUSION: We demonstrate the evolving trends in neurophysiological monitoring over the past 25 yr from a single, academic neurocritical care unit. ICP and CPP were responsive to the introduction of an ICP/CPP protocol while PRx has remained unchanged.

Telemetry in intracranial pressure monitoring: sensor survival and drift

Acta Neurochirurgica (2018) 160:21372144

Telemetric intracranial pressure (ICP) monitoring enable long-term ICP monitoring on patients during normal day activities and may accordingly be of use during evaluation and treatment of complicated ICP disorders. However, the benefits of such equipment depend strongly on the validity of the recordings and how often the telemetric sensor needs to be re-implanted. This study investigates the clinical and technical sensor survival time and drift of the telemetric ICP sensor: Raumedic Neurovent-P-tel.

Methods Implanted telemetric ICP sensors in the period from January 2011 to December 2017 were identified, and medical records reviewed for complications, explantation reasons, and parameters relevant for determining clinical and technical sensor survival time. Explanted sensors were tested in an experimental setup to study baseline drift.

Results In total, implantation of 119 sensors were identified. Five sensors (4.2%) were explanted due to skin dResultsamage, three (2.5%) due to wound infection, and two (1.7%) due to ethylene oxide allergy. No other complications were observed. The median clinical sensor survival time was 208 days (95% CI 150–382). The median technical sensor survival time was 556 days (95% CI 382–605). Explanted sensors had a median baseline drift of 2.5 mmHg (IQR 2.0–5.5).

Conclusion In most cases, the ICP sensor provides reliable measurements beyond the approved implantation time of 90 days. Thus, the sensor should not be routinely removed after this period, if ICP monitoring is still indicated. However, some sensors showed technical malfunction prior to the CE-approval, underlining that caution should always be taken when analyzing telemetric ICP curves.


Idiopathic intracranial hypertension: 120-day clinical, radiological, and manometric outcomes after stent insertion into the dural venous sinus

J Neurosurg 129:723–731, 2018

Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is commonly associated with venous sinus stenosis. In recent years, transvenous dural venous sinus stent (DVSS) insertion has emerged as a potential therapy for resistant cases. However, there remains considerable uncertainty over the safety and efficacy of this procedure, in particular the incidence of intraprocedural and delayed complications and in the longevity of sinus patency, pressure gradient obliteration, and therapeutic clinical outcome. The aim of this study was to determine clinical, radiological, and manometric outcomes at 3–4 months after DVSS in this treated IIH cohort.

METHODS Clinical, radiographic, and manometric data before and 3–4 months after DVSS were reviewed in this single-center case series. All venographic and manometric procedures were performed under local anesthesia with the patient supine.

RESULTS Forty-one patients underwent DVSS venography/manometry within 120 days. Sinus pressure reduction of between 11 and 15 mm Hg was achieved 3–4 months after DVSS compared with pre-stent baseline, regardless of whether the procedure was primary or secondary (after shunt surgery). Radiographic obliteration of anatomical stenosis correlating with reduction in pressure gradients was observed. The complication rate after DVSS was 4.9% and stent survival was 87.8% at 120 days. At least 20% of patients developed restenosis following DVSS and only 63.3% demonstrated an improvement or resolution of papilledema.

CONCLUSIONS Reduced venous sinus pressures were observed at 120 days after the procedure. DVSS showed lower complication rates than shunts, but the clinical outcome data were less convincing. To definitively compare the outcomes between DVSS and shunts in IIH, a randomized prospective study is needed.

Effect of venous stenting on intracranial pressure in idiopathic intracranial hypertension

Acta Neurochir (2017) 159:1429–1437

Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is characterised by an increased intracranial pressure (ICP) in the absence of any central nervous system disease or structural abnormality and by normal CSF composition. Management becomes complicated once surgical intervention is required. Venous sinus stenosis has been suggested as a possible aetiology for IIH. Venous sinus stenting has emerged as a possible interventional option. Evidence for venous sinus stenting is based on elimination of the venous pressure gradient and clinical response. There have been no studies demonstrating the immediate effect of venous stenting on ICP.

Methods Patients with a potential or already known diagnosis of IIH were investigated according to departmental protocol. ICP monitoring was performed for 24 h. When high pressures were confirmed, CT venogram and catheter venography were performed to look for venous stenosis to demonstrate a pressure gradient. If positive, venous stenting would be performed and ICP monitoring would continue for a further 24 h after deployment of the venous stent.

Results Ten patients underwent venous sinus stenting with concomitant ICP monitoring. Nine out of ten patients displayed an immediate reduction in their ICP that was maintained at 24 h. The average reduction in mean ICP and pulsatility was significant (p = 0.003). Six out of ten patients reported a symptomatic improvement within the first 2 weeks.

Conclusions Venous sinus stenting results in an immediate reduction in ICP. This physiological response to venous stenting has not previously been reported. Venous stenting could offer an alternative treatment option in correctly selected patients with IIH.

Novel method for dynamic control of intracranial pressure

J Neurosurg 126:1629–1640, 2017

Intracranial pressure (ICP) pulsations are generally considered a passive result of the pulsatility of blood flow. Active experimental modification of ICP pulsations would allow investigation of potential active effects on blood and CSF flow and potentially create a new platform for the treatment of acute and chronic low blood flow states as well as a method of CSF substance clearance and delivery. This study presents a novel method and device for altering the ICP waveform via cardiac-gated volume changes.

METHODS The novel device used in this experiment (named Cadence) consists of a small air-filled inelastic balloon (approximately 1.0 ml) implanted into the intracranial space and connected to an external programmable pump, triggered by an R-wave detector. Balloons were implanted into the epidural space above 1 of the hemispheres of 19 canines for up to 10 hours. When activated, the balloons were programed to cyclically inflate with the cardiac cycle with variable delay, phase, and volume. The ICP response was measured in both hemispheres. Additionally, cerebral blood flow (heat diffusion and laser Doppler) was studied in 16 canines.

RESULTS This system, depending on the inflation pattern of the balloon, allowed a flattening of the ICP waveform, increase in the ICP waveform amplitude, or phase shift of the wave. This occurred with small mean ICP changes, typically around ± 2 mm Hg (15%). Bilateral ICP effects were observed with activation of the device: balloon inflation at each systole increased the systolic ICP pulse (up to 16 mm Hg, 1200%) and deflation at systole decreased or even inverted the systolic ICP pulse (-0.5 to -19 mm Hg, -5% to -1600%) in a dose-(balloon volume) dependent fashion. No aphysiological or deleterious effects on systemic pressure (≤ ±10 mm Hg; 13% change in mean pressure) or cardiac rate (≤ ± 17 beats per minute; 16% change) were observed during up to 4 hours of balloon activity.

CONCLUSIONS The results of these initial studies using an intracranially implanted, cardiac-gated, volume-oscillating balloon suggest the Cadence device can be used to modify ICP pulsations, without physiologically deleterious effects on mean ICP, systemic vascular effects, or brain injury. This device and technique may be used to study the role of ICP pulsatility in intracranial hemo- and hydrodynamic processes and introduces the creation of a potential platform of a cardiac-gated system for treatment of acute and chronic low blood flow states, and diseases requiring augmentation of CSF substance clearance or delivery.

Imaging of Intracranial Pressure Disorders

Neurosurgery 80:341–354, 2017

Intracranial pressure (ICP) is the pressure inside the bony calvarium and can be affected by a variety of processes, such as intracranial masses and edema, obstruction or leakage of cerebrospinal uid, and obstruction of venous out flow. This review focuses on the imaging of 2 important but less well understood ICP disorders: idiopathic intracranial hypertension and spontaneous intracranial hypotension. Both of these ICP disorders have salient imaging findings that are important to recognize to help prevent their misdiagnosis from other common neurological disorders.

Associations of intracranial pressure with brain biopsy, radiological findings, and shunt surgery outcome in patients with suspected idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus

Acta Neurochir (2017) 159: 51-61

It remains unclear how intracranial pressure (ICP) measures are associated with brain biopsies and radiological markers. Here, we aim to investigate associations between ICP and radiological findings, brain biopsies, and shunt surgery outcome in patients with suspected idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (iNPH).


In this study, we retrospectively analyzed data from 73 patients admitted with suspected iNPH to Kuopio University Hospital. Of these patients, 71% underwent shunt surgery. The NPH registry included data on clinical and radiological examinations, 24-h intraventricular pressure monitoring, and frontal cortical biopsy.


The mean ICP and mean ICP pulse wave amplitude were not associated with the shunt response. Aggregations of Alzheimer’s disease (AD)-related proteins (amyloid-β, hyperphosphorylated tau) in frontal cortical biopsies were associated with a poor shunt response (P = 0.014). High mean ICP was associated with Evans’ index (EI; P = 0.025), disproportional sylvian and suprasylvian subarachnoid spaces (P = 0.014), and focally dilated sulci (P = 0.047). Interestingly, a high pulse wave amplitude was associated with AD-related biopsy findings (P = 0.032), but the mean ICP was not associated with the brain biopsy. The ICP was not associated with medial temporal lobe atrophy, temporal horn widths, or white matter changes. ICP B waves were associated with less atrophy of the medial temporal lobe (P = 0.018) and more severe disproportionality between the sylvian and suprasylvian subarachnoid spaces (P = 0.001).


The EI and disproportional sylvian and suprasylvian subarachnoid spaces were associated with mean ICP. Disproportionality was also associated with ICP B waves. These associations, although rather weak, with elevated ICP in 24-h measurements, support their value in iNPH diagnostics and suggest that these radiological markers are potentially related to the pathogenesis of iNPH. Interestingly, our results suggested that elevated pulse wave amplitude might be associated with brain amyloid accumulation.

Fewer complications with bolt-connected than tunneled external ventricular drainage


Acta Neurochir (2016) 158:1491–1494

Ventriculostomy/external ventricular drain (EVD) is a common neurosurgical procedure. Various techniques are used to fixate the drain and the objective of this study was, in a retrospective setting, to compare the incidence of complications when using bolt-connected EVD (BC-EVD) versus tunneled EVD (T-EVD).

Methods All patients subjected to an EVD performed through a new burr hole from 2009 through 2010 at two Depts. of Neurosurgery in Denmark (Odense and Aarhus) were retrospectively identified. Patient files were evaluated for EVD fixation technique (tunneled or bolt-connected EVD) and complications including unintended removal, catheter obstruction, infection, CSF leakage, and mechanical problems.

Results A total of 271 patients with 272 separate EVDs met the inclusion criteria. There was a statistically higher rate of complications leading to reinsertion in the tunneled EVD group (40 %), compared to the bolt-connected EVD group (6.5 %). There was no significant difference in infection rates.

Conclusions Tunneled EVD has a relatively high frequency of complications leading to reinsertion. The use of Bolt-connected EVD technique can lower this frequency significantly. The number needed to treat is three for preventing a complication requiring reinsertion. Infection rates are low for both types of ventriculostomies. Accordingly, we recommend use of Bolt-connected EVDs in neurosurgical practice.

Pulsatile Dynamics of the Optic Nerve Sheath and Intracranial Pressure


Neurosurgery 79:100–107, 2016

Raised intracranial pressure (ICP) may lead to increased stiffness of the optic nerve sheath (ONS).

OBJECTIVE: To develop a method for analyzing ONS dynamics from transorbital ultrasound and investigate a potential difference between patients with raised ICP vs normal ICP.

METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed data from 16 patients (#12 years old) for whom ultrasound image sequences of the ONS had been acquired from both eyes just before invasive measurement of ICP. Eight patients had an ICP $20 mm Hg. The transverse motion on each side of the ONS was estimated from ultrasound, and Fourier analysis was used to extract the magnitude of the displacement corresponding to the heart rate. By calculating the normalized absolute difference between the displacements on each side of the ONS, a measure of ONS deformation was obtained. This parameter was referred to as the deformability index. According to our hypothesis, because deformability is inversely related to stiffness, we expected this parameter to be lower for ICP $20 mm Hg compared with ICP ,20 mm Hg. The one-sided Mann-Whitney U test was used for statistical comparison.

RESULTS: The deformability index was significantly lower in the group with ICP $20 mm Hg (median value 0.11 vs 0.24; P = .002).

CONCLUSION: We present a method for assessment of ONS pulsatile dynamics using transorbital ultrasound imaging. A significant difference was noted between the patient groups, indicating that deformability of the ONS may be relevant as a noninvasive marker of raised ICP. The clinical implications are promising and should be investigated in future clinical studies.

Terson syndrome in aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage

Terson syndrome

Acta Neurochir (2016) 158:1027–1036

A large number of reports have not been able to clarify the pathophysiology of Terson syndrome (TS) in aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH).

Methods Prospective single-center study on aSAH patients. Fundoscopic and radiological signs of TS were assessed. The opening intracranial pressure (ICP) in patients who required a ventriculostomy was recorded with a manometer.

Results Six out of 36 included patients had TS (16.7 %), which was associated with unfavorable admission scores. Twenty-nine patients (80.5 %) required ventriculostomy; TS was associated with higher ICP (median, 40 vs. 15 cm cmH2O, p= .003); all patients with TS had pathological ICP values of >20 cmH2O. Patients with a ruptured aneurysm of the anterior cerebral artery complex were ten times as likely to suffer from TS (OR 10.0, 95 % CI 1.03–97.50). Detection of TS on CT had a sensitivity of 50 %, a specificity of 98.4 %, a positive predictive value of 83.3 %, and a negative predictive value of 92.4 %. Mortality was 45 times as high in patients with TS (OR 45.0, 95 % CI 3.86–524.7) and neurologic morbidity up until 3 months post-aSAH was significantly higher in patients with TS (mRS 4–6; 100 vs. 17 %; p = .001).

Conclusions Our findings demonstrate an association between raised ICP and the incidence of TS. TS should be ruled out in aSAH patients presenting comatose or with raised ICP to ensure upfront ophthalmological follow-up. In alert patients without visual complaints and a TS-negative CT scan, the likelihood for the presence of TS is very low.

Perioperative monitoring of pulsatile and static intracranial pressure in patients with Chiari malformation type 1

Natural history of Chiari malformation Type I following decision for conservative treatment

Acta Neurochir (2016) 158:341–347

Patients with Chiari malformation type 1 (CMI) often present with elevated pulsatile and static intracranial pressure (ICP). The preferred treatment of CMI, foramen magnum decompression (FMD), is assumed to normalise ICP and craniospinal pressure dissociation. In order to further explore the mechanisms behind FMD, the present study investigated whether or not pulsatile and static ICP normalises immediately after FMD.

Method The study included CMI patients undergoing FMD with perioperative ICP monitoring as a part of clinical management. The pulsatile and static ICP scores were retrieved from the department’s ICP database, and the clinical and radiological data from the patient records.

Results Eleven patients were included in the study. During the first 3 days following FMD, mixed model analysis revealed no significant time-dependent differences of preoperatively elevated either pulsatile (mean wave amplitude,MWA; p=0.85) and/or static (mean ICP, p = 0.90) ICP. Percentage of mean ICP >15 mmHg increased during days 2 and 3 after FMD. Two patients from the present series had to receive ventriculoperitoneal shunt after FMD in the early postoperative period.

Conclusions The present observations suggest that anatomical restoration of cerebrospinal fluid pathways by FMD does not lead to immediate normalisation of preoperatively altered pulsatile and static ICP in patients withCMI. This finding may explain persistent symptoms during the early period after FMD.