Minimally invasive keyhole approach for supramaximal frontal glioma resections

J Neurosurg 140:949–957, 2024

The authors aimed to review the frontal lobe’s surgical anatomy, describe their keyhole frontal lobectomy technique, and analyze the surgical results.

METHODS Patients with newly diagnosed frontal gliomas treated using a keyhole approach with supramaximal resection (SMR) from 2016 to 2022 were retrospectively reviewed. Surgeries were performed on patients asleep and awake. A human donor head was dissected to demonstrate the surgical anatomy. Kaplan-Meier curves were used for survival analysis.

RESULTS Of the 790 craniotomies performed during the study period, those in 47 patients met our inclusion criteria. The minimally invasive approach involved four steps: 1) debulking the frontal pole; 2) subpial dissection identifying the sphenoid ridge, olfactory nerve, and optic nerve; 3) medial dissection to expose the falx cerebri and interhemispheric structures; and 4) posterior dissection guided by motor mapping, avoiding crossing the inferior plane defined by the corpus callosum. A fifth step could be added for nondominant lesions by resecting the inferior frontal gyrus. Perioperative complications were recorded in 5 cases (10.6%). The average hospital length of stay was 3.3 days. High-grade gliomas had a median progression-free survival of 14.8 months and overall survival of 23.9 months.

CONCLUSIONS Keyhole approaches enabled successful SMR of frontal gliomas without added risks. Robust anatomical knowledge and meticulous surgical technique are paramount for obtaining successful resections.

Circulating Brain Injury Biomarkers: A Novel Method for Quantification of the Impact on the Brain After Tumor Surgery

Neurosurgery 93:847–856, 2023

Clinical methods to quantify brain injury related to neurosurgery are scarce. Circulating brain injury biomarkers have recently gained increased interest as new ultrasensitive measurement techniques have enabled quantification of brain injury through blood sampling.

OBJECTIVE: To establish the time profile of the increase in the circulating brain injury biomarkers glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), tau, and neurofilament light (NfL) after glioma surgery and to explore possible relationships between these biomarkers and outcome regarding volume of ischemic injury identified with postoperative MRI and new neurological deficits.

METHODS: In this prospective study, 34 adult patients scheduled for glioma surgery were included. Plasma concentrations of brain injury biomarkers were measured the day before surgery, immediately after surgery, and on postoperative days 1, 3, 5, and 10.

RESULTS: Circulating brain injury biomarkers displayed a postoperative increase in the levels of GFAP (P < .001), tau (P < .001), and NfL (P < .001) on Day 1 and a later, even higher, peak of NFL at Day 10 (P = .028). We found a correlation between the increased levels of GFAP, tau, and NfL on Day 1 after surgery and the volume of ischemic brain tissue on postoperative MRI. Patients with new neurological deficits after surgery had higher levels of GFAP and NfL on Day 1 compared with those without new neurological deficits.

CONCLUSION: Measuring circulating brain injury biomarkers could be a useful method for quantification of the impact on the brain after tumor surgery or neurosurgery in general.

Optimal Timing of Cranioplasty and Predictors of Overall Complications After Cranioplasty: The Impact of Brain Collapse

Neurosurgery 93:84–94, 2023

The optimal timing of cranioplasty (CP) and predictors of overall postoperative complications are still controversial.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the optimal timing of CP.

METHODS: Patients were divided into collapsed group and noncollapsed group based on brain collapse or not, respectively. Brain collapse volume was calculated in a 3-dimensional way. The primary outcomes were overall complications and outcomes at the 12-month follow-up after CP.

RESULTS: Of the 102 patients in this retrospective observation cohort study, 56 were in the collapsed group, and 46 were in the noncollapsed group. Complications were noted in 30.4% (n = 31), 24 (42.9%) patients in the collapsed group and 7 (15.2%) patients in the noncollapsed group, with a significant difference (P = .003). Thirty-three (58.9%) patients had good outcomes (modified Rankin Scale 0-3) in the collapsed group, and 34 (73.9%) patients had good outcomes in the noncollapsed group without a statistically significant difference (P = .113). Brain collapse (P = .005) and Karnofsky Performance Status score at the time of CP (P = .025) were significantly associated with overall postoperative complications. The cut-off value for brain collapse volume was determined as 11.26 cm 3 in the receiver operating characteristic curve. The DC-CP interval was not related to brain collapse volume or postoperative complications.

CONCLUSION: Brain collapse and lower Karnofsky Performance Status score at the time of CP were independent predictors of overall complications after CP. The optimal timing of CP may be determined by tissue window based on brain collapse volume instead of time window based on the decompressive craniectomy-CP interval.


Vascular risk profiles for predicting outcome and long-term mortality in patients with idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus: comparison of clinical decision support tools

J Neurosurg 138:476–482, 2023

Vascular risk factors (VRFs) may act synergistically, and clinical decision support tools (CDSTs) have been developed that present vascular risk as a summarized score. Because VRFs are a major issue in patients with idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (INPH), a CDST may be useful in the diagnostic workup. The objective was to compare 4 CDSTs to determine which one most accurately predicts short-term outcome and 10-year mortality after CSF shunt surgery in INPH patients.

METHODS One-hundred forty INPH patients who underwent CSF shunt surgery were included. For each patient, 4 CDST scores (Systematic Coronary Risk Evaluation–Older Persons [SCORE-OP], Framingham Risk Score [FRS], Revised Framingham Stroke Risk Profile, and Kiefer’s Comorbidity Index [KCI]) were estimated. Short-term outcome (3 months after CSF shunt surgery) was defined on the basis of improvements in gait, Mini-Mental State Examination score, and modified Rankin Scale score. The 10-year mortality rate after surgery was noted. The CDSTs were compared by using Cox regression analysis, receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, and the chi-square test.

RESULTS For 3 CDSTs, increased score was associated with increased risk of 10-year mortality. A 1-point increase in the FRS indicated a 2% higher risk of death within 10 years (HR 1.02, 95% CI 1.003–1.035, p = 0.021); SCORE-OP, 5% (HR 1.05, 95% CI 1.019–1.087, p = 0.002); and KCI, 12% (HR 1.12, 95% CI 1.03–1.219, p = 0.008). FRS predicted short-term outcome of surgery (p = 0.024). When the cutoff value was set to 32.5%, the positive predictive value was 80% and the negative predictive value was 48% (p = 0.012).

CONCLUSIONS The authors recommend using FRS to predict short-term outcome and 10-year risk of mortality in INPH patients. The study indicated that extensive treatment of the risk factors of INPH may decrease risk of mortality.

Surgical management and outcomes in spinal intradural arachnoid cysts

Acta Neurochirurgica (2022) 164:1217–1228

Evaluation of the presentation and outcomes of different surgical treatment approaches for spinal intradural arachnoid cysts (SIAC).

Methods Cases were identified from electronic records of two major neurosurgical centres in London over the last 10 years (October 2009–October 2019) that have been surgically treated in both institutions. Clinical findings, surgical technique, and recurrence by procedure were statistically analysed. Statistical analysis was performed with STATA 13.1 Software.

Results A total of 42 patients with SIAC were identified for this study with a mean age at the time of surgery of 53.6 years and a male:female ratio of 8:13. There were 31 patients with primary SIACs and 11 with secondary SIACs. The most common presenting symptom was paraesthesia (n = 27). The most common location of the cyst was in the thoracic region (n = 33). Syrinx was present in 26.2% of SIACs (n = 11). Resection was associated with significantly better postoperative pain compared to other surgical techniques (p = 0.01), significantly poorer postoperative urinary function (p = 0.029), and lower rates of sensory recovery in patients who presented preoperatively with sensory deficit (p = 0.041). No significant difference was seen in symptomatic outcomes between patients with primary and secondary SIACs.

Conclusion Resection and drainage are both effective methods of managing SIACs. In this observational study, resection was associated with significantly reduced pain postoperatively when compared with drainage, however also with significantly less improvement in postoperative urinary function. Therefore, resection should be the gold standard management option for SIACs, with drainage as an option where resection is unsafe, and drainage should also be considered in patients presenting with urinary dysfunction.

Natural History of Spinal Cord Cavernous Malformations

Neurosurgery 90:390–398, 2022

The natural history of spinal cord cavernous malformations (SCCMs) remains relatively unclear.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the natural history for hemorrhagic risks and neurological outcomes, as well as relevant predicting factors, of SCCMs.

METHODS: All patients between 2002 and 2019 with diagnosis of SCCMs were identified retrospectively. An observational study of patients with conservative management was performed to reveal the natural history of SCCMs.

RESULTS: We identified 305 patients in the full cohort, including 126 patients who were conservatively treated for at least 6 months (median observational period, 24.0 months). Forty-five hemorrhage events occurred during 527 person-years of follow-up, yielding an annual hemorrhage rate of 8.5% per person-year. The 1-, 2-, and 5-year cumulative risks of hemorrhage were 13.9%, 26.1%, and 35.1%, respectively. Prior hemorrhage (hazard ratio [HR] = 12.948, P = .012) and pediatric patients (HR = 2.841, P = .031) were independent predictors of hemorrhage in the long-term follow-up. Familial form (adjusted odds ratio [OR] = 30.695, P = .010) and subsequent hemorrhage events (adjusted OR = 16.333, P = .000) were independent risk factors for worsening of neurological function, and baseline neurological status (adjusted OR = 78.984, P = .000) and presence of subsequent hemorrhage (adjusted OR = 9.611, P = .001) were significantly associated with neurological outcomes.

CONCLUSION: The natural history of SCCMs varies. Baseline characteristics, such as pediatric patients, familial form, and baseline neurological status, as well as prior and subsequent hemorrhagic events, significantly affect the natural history of the SCCMs, which prompts a differentiated treatment strategy.

The Long-Term Outcome of Radiofrequency Ablation in Multiple Sclerosis–Related Symptomatic Trigeminal Neuralgia

Neurosurgery 90:293–299, 2022

Radiofrequency lesioning (RFL) is used to surgically manage trigeminal neuralgia (TN) secondary to multiple sclerosis (MS). However, the long-term outcome of RFL has not been established.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the long-term clinical outcome of RFL in MS-related TN (symptomatic trigeminal neuralgia [STN]).

METHODS: During a 23-yr period, institutional data were available for 51 patients with STN who underwent at least one RFL procedure to treat facial pain. Patient outcome was evaluated at a mean follow-up of 69 mo (95% confidence interval; range 52-86 mo). No pain with no medication (NPNM) was the primary long-term outcome measure.

RESULTS: After an initial RFL procedure, immediate pain relief was achieved in 50 patients (98%), and NPNM as assessed at 1, 3, and 6 yr was 86%, 52%, and 22%, respectively. At the last clinical visit after an initial RFL, 23 patients (45%) with pain recurrence underwent repeat RFL; NPNM at 1, 3, and 6 yr after a repeat RFL was 85%, 58%, and 32%, respectively. There was no difference in pain outcome after an initial and repeat RFL (P = .77). Ten patients with pain recurrence underwent additional RFL procedures. Two patients developed mastication muscle weakness, one patient experienced a corneal abrasion, which resolved with early ophthalmological interventions, and one patient experienced bothersome numbness.

CONCLUSION: RFL achieves NPNM status in STN and can be repeated with similar efficacy.

A Systematic Review of Repeat Microvascular Decompression for Recurrent or Persistent Trigeminal Neuralgia

World Neurosurg. (2022) 158:226-233

When conservative therapy fails, microvascular decompression (MVD) has been the preferred treatment of primary trigeminal neuralgia (TN). However, the management of recurrent or persistent TN after MVD can often be difficult. The purpose of the present systematic review was to objectively analyze and summarize the reported literature regarding the feasibility of repeat MVD.

METHODS: We conducted a database search using the MEDLINE and PubMed databases until July 2020. The search terms used for title and abstract screening were as follows: “recurrent trigeminal neuralgia,” “persistent trigeminal neuralgia,” “repeat microvascular decompression,” and “reexploration.” The inclusion criteria for the systematic review were as follows: clinical studies (excluding case studies), repeat MVD treatment of TN, and studies that had recorded the pain relief outcomes, operative findings, and complications (if any).

RESULTS: Of the 1771 initial results obtained, we performed a full text screening of 43 studies, and, ultimately, 19 were deemed eligible. A total of 2247 patients had undergone MVD for TN, of whom, 311 had experienced recurrence (13.84%). Of the 311 patients, 178 had undergone repeat MVD. The average painfree interval was 27.75 months after the first MVD. The effective rate of repeat MVD was 91.66%, and 71.48% of the patients had had obvious compression found at repeat MVD. The postoperative complication rate after repeat MVD was 37.31% and was due to postoperative adhesions around the nerve and nerve injury caused by partial sensory rhizotomy. The most common complication after repeat MVD was facial numbness (21.89%), although the incidence of other complications was <5%.

CONCLUSIONS: For patients with recurrent or persistent pain after MVD, the findings from our systematic review support that repeat MVD remains a feasible treatment for recurrent or persistent TN.

Endovascular versus surgical treatment of cranial dural arteriovenous fistulas: a single‑center 8‑year experience

Acta Neurochirurgica (2022) 164:151–161

Cranial dural arteriovenous fistulas (dAVFs) are rare lesions managed mainly with endovascular treatment (EVT) and/or surgery. We hypothesize that there may be subtypes of dAVFs responding better to a specific treatment modality in terms of successful obliteration and cessation of symptoms and/or risks.

Methods All dAVFs treated during 2011–2018 at our hospital were analyzed retrospectively. Presenting symptoms, radiological variables, treatment modality, complications, and residual symptoms were related to dAVF type using the original Djindjian classification.

Results We treated 112 dAVFs in 107 patients (71, 66% males). They presented with hemorrhage (n = 23; 21%), nonhemorrhagic symptoms (n = 75; 70%), or were discovered incidentally (n = 9; 8%). There were 25 (22%) type I, 29 (26%) type II, 26 (23%) type III, and 32 (29%) type IV fistulas. EVT was the primary treatment modality in 72/112 (64%) dAVFs whereas 40/112 (36%) underwent primary surgery with angiographic obliteration rates of 60% and 90%, respectively. Using a secondary treatment modality in 23 dAVFs, we obtained a final obliteration rate of 93%, including all type III/IV and 26/27 (96%) type II dAVFs. Except for headache, residual symptoms were rare and minor. Permanent neurological complications consisted of five cranial nerve deficits.

Conclusions We recommend EVT as first treatment modality in types I, II, and in non-hemorrhagic type III/IV dAVFs. We recommend surgery as first treatment choice in acute hemorrhagic dAVFs and as secondary choice in type III/IV dAVFs not successfully occluded by EVT. Combining the two modalities provides obliteration in 9/10 dAVF cases at a low procedural risk.

Intermediate-grade brain arteriovenous malformations and the boundary of operability using the supplemented Spetzler-Martin grading system

J Neurosurg 136:125–133, 2022

Supplemented Spetzler-Martin grading (Supp-SM), which is the combination of Spetzler-Martin and Lawton-Young grades, was validated as being more accurate than stand-alone Spetzler-Martin grading, but an operability cutoff was not established. In this study, the authors surgically treated intermediate-grade AVMs to provide prognostic factors for neurological outcomes and to define AVMs at the boundary of operability.

METHODS Surgically treated Supp-SM intermediate-grade (5, 6, and 7) AVMs were analyzed from 2011 to 2018 at two medical centers. Worsened neurological outcomes were defined as increased modified Rankin Scale (mRS) scores on postoperative examinations. A second analysis of 2000–2011 data for Supp-SM grade 6 and 7 AVMs was performed to determine the subtypes with improved or unchanged outcomes. Patients were separated into three groups based on nidus size (S1: < 3 cm, S2: 3–6 cm, S3: > 6 cm) and age (A1: < 20 years, A2: 20–40 years, A3: > 40 years), followed by any combination of the combined supplemented grade: low risk (S1A1, S1A2, S2A1), intermediate risk (S2A2, S1A3, S3A1, or high risk (S3A3, S3A2, S2A3).

RESULTS Two hundred forty-six patients had intermediate Supp-SM grade AVMs. Of these patients, 102 had Supp-SM grade 5 (41.5%), 99 had Supp-SM grade 6 (40.2%), and 45 had Supp-SM grade 7 (18.3%). Significant differences in the proportions of patients with worse mRS scores at follow-up were found between the groups, with 24.5% (25/102) of patients in Supp-SM grade 5, 29.3% (29/99) in Supp-SM grade 6, and 57.8% (26/45) in Supp-SM grade 7 (p < 0.001). Patients with Supp-SM grade 7 AVMs had significantly increased odds of worse postoperative mRS scores (p < 0.001; OR 3.7, 95% CI 1.9–7.3). In the expanded cohort of 349 Supp-SM grade 6 AVM patients, a significantly higher proportion of older patients with larger Supp-SM grade 6 AVMs (grade 6+, 38.6%) had neurological deterioration than the others with Supp-SM grade 6 AVMs (22.9%, p = 0.02). Conversely, in an expanded cohort of 197 Supp-SM grade 7 AVM patients, a significantly lower proportion of younger patients with smaller Supp-SM grade 7 AVMs (grade 7–, 19%) had neurological deterioration than the others with Supp-SM grade 7 AVMs (44.9%, p = 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS Patients with Supp-SM grade 7 AVMs are at increased risk of worse postoperative neurological outcomes, making Supp-SM grade 6 an appropriate operability cutoff. However, young patients with small niduses in the low-risk Supp-SM grade 7 group (grade 7−) have favorable postoperative outcomes. Outcomes in Supp-SM grade 7 patients did not improve with surgeon experience, indicating that the operability boundary is a hard limit reflecting the complexity of high-grade AVMs.

Burr hole craniostomy versus minicraniotomy in chronic subdural hematoma: a comparative cohort study

Acta Neurochirurgica (2021) 163:3217–3223

Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) is one of the most common neurosurgical diseases. In surgical management of CSDH, there is a lack of standardized guidelines concerning surgical techniques and a lack of consensus on which technique(s) are optimal. Neurosurgical centers have shown a wide variation in surgical techniques. The purpose of this study was to compare two different surgical techniques, one burr hole craniostomy with an active subgaleal drain (BHC) and minicraniotomy with a passive subdural drain (MC).

Methods We conducted a multicenter retrospective cohort study at two neurosurgical centers in Sweden which included patients with unilateral CSDHs that received surgical treatment with either BHC or MC. The primary outcomes in comparison of the techniques were 30-day mortality, recurrence rate, and complications according to the Landriel Ibañez grading system for complications.

Results A total of 1003 patients were included in this study. The BHC subgroup included 560 patients, and the MC subgroup included 443 patients. A 30-day mortality when comparing BHC (2.3%) and MC (2.7%) was similar (p = 0.701). Comparing recurrence rate for BHC (8.9%) and MC (10.8%) showed no significant difference (p = 0.336). We found that medical complications were significantly more common in the MC group (p = 0.001). Surgical complications (type IIb) was also associated with the MC group (n = 10, p = 0.003). Out of the 10 patients with type IIb complications in the MC group, 8 had postoperative acute subdural hematomas.

Conclusions BHC was comparable to MC concerning 30-day mortality rate and recurrence rates. We did, however, find that MC was significantly associated with medical complications and serious surgical postoperative complications.

The Shape grading system: a classification for growth patterns of pituitary adenomas

Acta Neurochirurgica (2021) 163:3181–3189

Long-term tumor control of pituitary adenomas may be achieved by gross total resection (GTR). Factors, which influence the extent of resection, are invasiveness, tumor size, and possibly tumor shape. Nevertheless, the latter factor has not been assessed so far and there is no classification for the different shapes. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of different tumor shapes on GTR rates and outcome according to our proposed “Shape grading system.”

Methods In this retrospective single center study, the radiological outcome of nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas was assessed with respect to the following previously defined growth patterns: spherical (Shape I), oval (Shape II), dumbbell (Shape III), mushroom (Shape IV), and polylobulated (Shape V).

Results A total of 191 patients were included (Shape I, n = 28 (15%); Shape II, n = 91 (48%); Shape III, n = 37 (19%); Shape IV, n = 12 (6%); Shape V, n = 23 (12%)). GTR was achieved in 101 patients (53%) with decreasing likelihood of GTR in higher shape grades (Shape I, n = 23 (82%); Shape II, n = 67 (74%); Shape III, n = 9 (24%); Shape IV, n = 2 (17%); Shape V, n = 0 (0%)). This correlated with larger tumor remnants, a higher risk of tumor recurrence/regrowth and therefore necessity of re-surgery and/or radiotherapy/radiosurgery.

Conclusion The “Shape grading system” may be used as a predictor of the outcome in nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas. The higher the “Shape grade,” the higher the likelihood for lower GTR rates, larger tumor remnants, and need for further therapies.

Early surgery for superficial supratentorial spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage: a Finnish Intensive Care Consortium study

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162:3153–3160

The benefits of early surgery in cases of superficial supratentorial spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) are unclear. This study aimed to assess the association between early ICH surgery and outcome, as well as the cost-effectiveness of early ICH surgery.

Methods We conducted a retrospective, register-based multicenter study that included all patients who had been treated for supratentorial spontaneous ICH in four tertiary intensive care units in Finland between 2003 and 2013. To be included, patients needed to have experienced supratentorial ICHs that were 10–100 cm3 and located within 10 mm of the cortex. We used a multivariable analysis, adjusting for the severity of the illness and the probability of surgical treatment, to assess the independent association between early ICH surgery (≤ 1 day), 12-month mortality rates, and the probability of survival without permanent disability. In addition, we assessed the cost-effectiveness of ICH surgery by examining the effective cost per 1-year survivor (ECPS) and per independent survivor (ECPIS).

Results Of 254 patients, 27%were in the early surgery group. Overall 12-monthmortality was 39%, while 29%survived without a permanent disability. According to our multivariable analysis, early ICH surgery was associated with lower 12-month mortality rates (odds ratio [OR] 0.22, 95% confidence intervals [CI] 0.10–0.51), but not with a higher probability of survival without permanent disability (OR 1.23, 95% CI 0.59–2.56). For the early surgical group, the ECPS and ECPIS were €111,409 and €334,227, respectively. For the non-surgical cohort, the ECPS and ECPIS were €76,074 and €141,471, respectively.

Conclusions Early surgery for superficial ICH is associated with a lower 12-month mortality risk but not with a higher probability of survival without a permanent disability. Further, costs were higher and cost-effectiveness was, thus, worse for the early surgical cohort.

Efficacy and safety of gamma knife radiosurgery for posterior cranial fossa meningioma

Neurosurgical Review (2020) 43:1089–1099

The management of posterior cranial fossa meningioma [PCFM] is challenging and many neurosurgeons advise gamma knife radiosurgery [GKRS] as a modality for its upfront or adjuvant treatment. Due to the varying radiosurgical response based on lesion location, tumor biology, and radiation dosage, we performed a pioneer attempt in doing a systematic review analyzing the treatment efficacy and safety profile of GKRS for PCFM based on current literature.

A systematic review was performed according to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses [PRISMA] guidelines. A thorough literature search was conducted on PubMed, Web of science, and Cochrane data base; articles were selected systematically based on PRISMA protocol, reviewed completely, and relevant data was summarized and discussed.

A total of 18 publications pertaining to GKRS for PCFM were included with a pooled sample size of 2131 patients. The median pre-GKRS tumor volume ranged from 2.28 to 10.5 cm [3]. Primary GKRS was administered in 61.1% of the pooled study cohorts, adjuvant treatment in 32.9%, and salvage therapy in 6.5% patients. Majority of the meningiomas were WHO grade 1 tumors (99.7%). The pooled mean marginal dose in the studies was 13.6 Gy (range 12–15.2 Gy) while the mean of maximum doses was 28.6 Gy (range 25–35 Gy). Most studies report an excellent radiosurgical outcome including the tumor control rate and the progression-free survival [PFS] of over 90%. The tumor control, PFS, and adverse radiation effect [ARE] rates in author’s series were 92.3%, 91%, and 9.6%, respectively. The favorable radiosurgical outcome depends on multiple factors such as small tumor volume, absence of previous radiotherapy, tumor location, elderly patients, female gender, longer time from symptom onset, and decreasing maximal dose.

GKRS as primary or adjuvant treatment modality needs to be considered as a promising management strategy for PCFM in selected patients in view of the growing evidence of high tumor control rate, improved neurological functions, and low incidence of ARE. The use of multiple isocenters, 3-D image planning, and limit GKRS treatment to tumors less than 3.5 cm help to avoid complications and achieve the best results. The treatment decisions in PCFM cases must be tailored and should consider the factors such as radiological profile, symptom severity, performance level, and patient preference for a good outcome.

Endoscopic Transnasal Trans-Sphenoidal Approach for Pituitary Adenomas: A Comparison to the Microscopic Approach Cohort by Propensity Score Analysis

Neurosurgery DOI:10.1093/neuros/nyz201

Despite some evidence for the adoption of endoscopic transnasal transsphenoidal surgery (ETSS) for pituitary adenomas, the advantages of this technique over the traditional approach have not been robustly confirmed.

OBJECTIVE: To compare ETSS with the microscopic sublabial trans-septal transsphenoidal surgery (MTSS) for pituitary adenomas.

METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed 2 cohorts of ETSS and MTSS performed at our institution from 1995 to 2017. Patient characteristics, surgical data, and outcomes were recorded prospectively. We performed a univariate and multivariable analysis to determine the best surgical approach. To improve the quality of the results, we matched the distribution of patient characteristics between groups by propensity score (PS) method.

RESULTS: A total of 187 procedures (90 MTSS, 97 ETSS) were reviewed. We found better results in the ETSS group in terms of gross total resection (P = .002) and hormone-excess secretion control (P=.014). There was also a lower incidence of cerebrospinal fluid leakage (P = .039), transitory diabetes insipidus (P = .028), and postoperative hypopituitarism (P = .045), as well as a shorter hospital length of stay (P < .001). After PS matching, we confirmed by multivariable logistic regression analysis an increased odds ratio of gross total resection for the ETSS (3.910; 95% CI 1.720-8.889; P= .001).

CONCLUSION: By PS method, our results suggest that the ETSS provides advantages over the traditional MTSS approach for tumor resection. Better control of secreting tumors and a lower rate of most complications also support the selection of the ETSS approach for the treatment of pituitary adenomas.

Riskier-than-expected occlusive treatment of ruptured posterior communicating artery aneurysms

J Neurosurg 131:1269–1277, 2019

Occlusive treatment of posterior communicating artery (PCoA) aneurysms has been seen as a fairly uncomplicated procedure. The objective here was to determine the radiological and clinical outcome of patients after PCoA aneurysm rupture and treatment and to evaluate the risk factors for impaired outcome.

METHODS In a retrospective clinical follow-up study, data were collected from 620 consecutive patients who had been treated for ruptured PCoA aneurysms at a single center between 1980 and 2014. The follow-up was a minimum of 1 year after treatment or until death.

RESULTS Of the 620 patients, 83% were treated with microsurgical clipping, 8% with endovascular coiling, 2% with the two procedures combined, 1% with indirect surgical methods, and 6% with conservative methods. The most common procedural complications were treatment-related brain infarctions (15%). The occurrence of artery occlusions (10% microsurgical, 8% endovascular) was higher than expected. Most patients made a good recovery at 1 year after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (modified Rankin Scale [mRS] score 0–2: 386 patients [62%]). A fairly small proportion of patients were left severely disabled (mRS score 4–5: 27 patients [4%]). Among all patients, 20% died during the 1st year. Independent risk factors for an unfavorable outcome, according to the multivariable analysis, were poor preoperative clinical condition, intracerebral or subdural hematoma due to aneurysm rupture, age over 65 years, artery occlusion on postoperative angiography, occlusive treatment–related ischemia, delayed cerebral vasospasm, and hydrocephalus requiring a shunt.

CONCLUSIONS Even though most patients made a good recovery after PCoA aneurysm rupture and treatment during the 1st year, the occlusive treatment–related complications were higher than expected and caused morbidity even among initially good-grade patients. Occlusive treatment of ruptured PCoA aneurysms seems to be a high-risk procedure, even in a high-volume neurovascular center.

Repeat Gamma Knife radiosurgery versus microvascular decompression following failure of GKRS in trigeminal neuralgia: a systematic review and meta-analysis

J Neurosurg 131:1197–1206, 2019

Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) has emerged as a promising treatment modality for patients with classical trigeminal neuralgia (TN); however, considering that almost half of the patients experience post-GKRS failure or lesion recurrence, a repeat treatment is typically necessary. The existing literature does not offer clear evidence to establish which treatment modality, repeat GKRS or microvascular decompression (MVD), is superior. The present study aimed to compare the overall outcome of patients who have undergone either repeat GKRS or MVD after failure of their primary GKRS; the authors do so by conducting a systematic review and meta-analysis of the literature and analysis of data from their own institution.

METHODS The authors conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of the PubMed, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, and CINAHL databases to identify studies describing patients who underwent either repeat GKRS or MVD after initial failed GKRS for TN. The primary outcomes were complete pain relief (CPR) and adequate pain relief (APR) at 1 year. The secondary outcomes were rate of postoperative facial numbness and the retreatment rate. The pooled data were analyzed with R software. Bias and heterogeneity were assessed using funnel plots and I 2 tests, respectively. A retrospective analysis of a series of patients treated by the authors who underwent repeat GKRS or MVD after postGKRS failure or relapse is presented.

RESULTS A total of 22 studies met the selection criteria and were included for final data retrieval and meta-analysis. The search did not identify any study that had directly compared outcomes between patients who had undergone repeat GKRS versus those who had undergone MVD. Therefore, the authors’ final analysis included two groups: studies describing outcome after repeat GKRS (n = 17) and studies describing outcome after MVD (n = 5). The authors’ institutional study was the only study with direct comparison of the two cohorts. The pooled estimates of primary outcomes were APR in 83% of patients who underwent repeat GKRS and 88% of those who underwent MVD (p = 0.49), and CPR in 46% of patients who underwent repeat GKRS and 72% of those who underwent MVD (p = 0.02). The pooled estimates of secondary outcomes were facial numbness in 32% of patients who underwent repeat GKRS and 22% of those who underwent MVD (p = 0.11); the retreatment rate was 19% in patients who underwent repeat GKRS and 13% in those who underwent MVD (p = 0.74). The authors’ institutional study included 42 patients (repeat GKRS in 15 and MVD in 27), and the outcomes 1 year after retreatment were APR in 80% of those who underwent repeat GKRS and 81% in those who underwent MVD (p = 1.0); CPR was achieved in 47% of those who underwent repeat GKRS and 44% in those who underwent MVD (p = 1.0). There was no difference in the rate of postoperative facial numbness or retreatment.

CONCLUSIONS The current meta-analysis failed to identify any superiority of one treatment over the other with comparable outcomes in terms of APR, postoperative facial numbness, and retreatment rates. However, MVD was shown to provide a better chance of CPR compared with repeat GKRS.

Ultrasonic aspiration in neurosurgery: comparative analysis of complications and outcome for three commonly used models

Acta Neurochirurgica (2019) 161:2073–2082

Ultrasonic aspiration (UA) devices are commonly used for resecting intracranial tumors, as they allow for internal debulking of large tumors, hereby avoiding damage to adjacent brain tissue during the dissection. Little is known about their comparative safety profiles.

Methods and materials We analyzed data from a prospective patient registry. Procedures using one of the following UA models were included: Integra® CUSA, Söring®, and Stryker® Sonopet. The primary endpoint was morbidity at discharge, defined as significant worsening on the Karnofsky Performance Scale. Secondary endpoints included morbidity and mortality until 3 months postoperative (M3), occurrence, type, and etiology of complications.

Results Of n = 1028 procedures, the CUSA was used in n = 354 (34.4 %), the Söring in n = 461 (44.8 %), and the Sonopet in n = 213 (20.7 %). There was some heterogeneity of study groups. In multivariable analysis, patients in the Söring (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 1.29; 95 % confidence interval (CI), 0.80–2.08; p = 0.299), and Sonopet group (aOR, 0.86; 95 % CI, 0.46–1.61; p = 0.645) were as likely as patients in the CUSA group to experience discharge morbidity. At M3, patients in the Söring (aOR, 1.20; 95 % CI, 0.78–1.86; p = 0.415) and Sonopet group (aOR, 0.53; 95 % CI, 0.26–1.08; p = 0.080) were as likely as patients in the CUSA group to experience morbidity. There were also no differences for M3 morbidity in subgroup analyses for gliomas, meningiomas, and metastases. The grade (p = 0.608) and etiology (p = 0.849) of postoperative complications were similar.

Conclusions Neurosurgeons select UA types with regard to certain case-specific characteristics. The safety profiles of three commonly used UA types appear mostly similar.

Short-term versus long-term outcomes of microvascular decompression for hemifacial spasm

Acta Neurochirurgica (2019) 161:2027–2033

Microvascular decompression (MVD) is a useful treatment for hemifacial spasm (HFS), but the postoperative course is extremely diverse. The purpose of this study was to compare short- and long-term outcomes, find the earliest optimal time for determining the long-term outcomes, and investigate the prognostic factors involved in the outcomes over time.

Methods From July 2004 to January 2015, 1341 patients who underwent MVD for HFS were enrolled. Information on clinical features, operative findings, and surgical outcomes over time were collected by performing a review of electronic medical records, and their relationships were analyzed. The outcomes of MVD at 1, 3, 6, and 9 months were individually compared against those at > 12 months after surgery.

Results The mean follow-up period after surgery was 44.9 months (median, 36.8 months; range, 12.0–156.6 months). The overall improvement rate for the 1341 patients was 89.0%. Individual postoperative outcomes at 6 and 9 months showed no differences with those at > 12 months after surgery. Furthermore, in the uni- and multi-variable analyses, patients in whom the offending vessels were intraoperatively determined to be veins showed bad outcomes at 6, 9, and > 12 months (p = 0.048, p = 0.004, and p = 0.003, respectively). Patients with intraoperative indentation on the facial nerve showed good outcomes at 6, 9, and > 12 months (p = 0.005, p = 0.039, and p = 0.020, respectively). Patients with delayed facial palsy after surgery showed better outcomes at 6, 9, and > 12 months (p = 0.002, p = 0.003, and p = 0.028, respectively).

Conclusions Short- and long-term outcomes of MVD in patients with HFS manifested differently, but the outcomes at 6 and 9 months showed similarities with those at > 12 months. In patients in whom the intraoperatively detected offending vessel was not a vein, and in patients with intraoperative indentation on the facial nerve and postoperative delayed facial palsy, good outcomes could be predicted after 6 months of surgery.

Does Drain Position and Duration Influence Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Burr-Hole Evacuation of Chronic Subdural Hematoma?

Neurosurgery, Volume 85, Issue 4, October 2019, Pages 486–493

Drain insertion following chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) evacuation improves patient outcomes.

OBJECTIVE: To examine whether this is influenced by variation in drain location, positioning or duration of placement.

METHODS: We performed a subgroup analysis of a previously reported multicenter, prospective cohort study of CSDH patients performed between May 2013 and January 2014. Data were analyzed relating drain location (subdural or subgaleal), position (through a frontal or parietal burr hole), and duration of insertion, to outcomes in patients aged >16 yr undergoing burr-hole drainage of primary CSDH. Primary outcomes comprised modified Rankin scale (mRS) at discharge and symptomatic recurrence requiring redrainage within 60 d.

RESULTS: A total of 577 patients were analyzed. The recurrence rate of 6.7% (12/160) in the frontal subdural drain group was comparable to 8.8% (30/343) in the parietal subdural drain group. Only 44/577 (7.6%) patients underwent subgaleal drain insertion. Recurrence rates were comparable between subdural (7.7%; 41/533) and subgaleal (9.1%; 4/44) groups (P = .95). We found no significant differences in discharge mRS between these groups. Recurrence rates were comparable between patients with postoperative drainage for 1 or 2 d, 6.4% and 8.4%, respectively (P = .44). There was no significant difference in mRS scores between these 2 groups (P = .56).

CONCLUSION: Drain insertion after CSDH drainage is important, but position (subgaleal or subdural) and duration did not appear to influence recurrence rate or clinical outcomes. Similarly, drain location did not influence recurrence rate nor outcomes where both parietal and frontal burr holes were made. Further prospective cohort studies or randomized controlled trials could provide further clarification.