Proposal of a new grading system for meningioma resection: the Copenhagen Protocol

Acta Neurochirurgica (2022) 164:229–238

The extent of meningioma resection is the most fundamental risk factor for recurrence, and exact knowledge of extent of resection is necessary for prognostication and for planning of adjuvant treatment. Currently used classifications are the EANO-grading and the Simpson grading. The former comprises radiological imaging with contrast-enhanced MRI and differentiation between “gross total removal” and “subtotal removal,” while the latter comprises a five-tiered differentiation of the surgeon’s impression of the extent of resection. The extent of resection of tumors is usually defined via analyses of resection margins but has until now not been implemented for meningiomas. PET/MRI imaging with 68Ga-DOTATOC allows more sensitive and specific imaging than MRI following surgery of meningiomas.

Objective To develop an objective grading system based on microscopic analyses of resection margins and sensitive radiological analyses to improve management of follow-up, adjuvant therapy, and prognostication of meningiomas. Based on the rationale of resection-margin analyses as gold standard and superior imaging performance of 68Ga DOTATOC PET, we propose “Copenhagen Grading” for meningiomas.

Results Copenhagen Grading was described for six pilot patients with examples of positive and negative findings on histopathology and DOTATOC PET scanning. The grading could be traceably implemented and parameters of grading appeared complementary. Copenhagen Grading is prospectively implemented as a clinical standard at Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen.

Conclusion Copenhagen Grading provided a comprehensive, logical, and reproducible definition of the extent of resection. It offers promise to be the most sensitive and specific imaging modality available for meningiomas. Clinical and cost-efficacy remain to be established during prospective implementation.

Repeated 3.0 Tesla Magnetic Resonance Imaging After Clinically Successful Lumbar Disc Surgery

Repeated 3.0 Tesla Magnetic Resonance Imaging After Clinically Successful Lumbar Disc Surgery

Spine 2016;41:239–245

Study Design. Prospective cohort study.

Objective. To describe the naturally occurring magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings after successful microsurgical removal of lumbar disc herniation with repeated MRI examinations.

Summary of Background Data. The interpretation of MRI after spinal surgery may be particularly challenging and image findings do not always correlate to clinical findings. Early postoperative MRI has limited value in the evaluation of patients after surgery for lumbar disc herniation.

Methods. Prospective study of 30 successfully operated patients, which underwent 3.0 T MRI within 24 h after surgery for lumbar disc herniation and repeated at 6 weeks and 3 months postoperatively. Postoperative image findings (nerve root enhancement, nerve root thickening, displacement or compression of the nerve root, and residual mass size and signal) were assessed quantitatively. Inter-rater reliability was tested.

Results. Inter-rater reliability between neuroradiologists was moderate for assessed MRI variables. In the immediate postoperative phase, compression or dislocation of the nerve root at the operated level was common. A residual mass at the operated level was seen in 80%, 47%, and 33% after 24 h, 6 weeks, and 3 months, respectively. Postoperative dislocation or compression of the nerve root from residual masses was seen in 67%, 24%, and 14% after 24 h, 6 weeks, and 3 months, respectively. A residual mass with a higher signal than muscle on T2-weighted images was seen in 80%, 30%, and 17% after 24 h, 6 weeks, and 3 months, respectively.

Conclusion. A residual mass with compression or dislocation of the nerve root at the operated level, that disappears over 3 months, is a common MRI finding in patients successfully operated for symptomatic lumbar disc herniation. An expectant approach instead of early reoperations may perhaps be preferred in patients with residual pain and root compression due to residual masses with high T2-signal since these often seem to resolve spontaneously.

Level of Evidence: 3