Patient-Reported Outcome Measures in Neurosurgery

Neurosurgery 83:622–630, 2018

Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) play an important role in the evaluation of health outcomes, quality of life, and satisfaction, and have been successfully utilized in many areas of clinical medicine and surgical practice. The prevalence of PROMs in neurosurgery is not known.

OBJECTIVE: To review the PROMs that have been utilized in the published neurosurgery literature to date.

METHODS: Articles were searched in MEDLINE, EMBASE, HMIC HealthManagement Information Consortium, PsycARTICLES, and PsycINFO using search terms related to neurosurgery and PROMs, published from 1806 to August 2016. A total of 268 articles were identified that were stratified by the inclusion and exclusion criteria leading to a total of 137 articles. Twenty-six PROMs, involving both adult and pediatric populations,were identified.

RESULTS: A large number of generic and disease-specific PROMs are used in the neurosurgical literature. Generic PROMs are usually nonspecific measures of health status. Disease specific PROMs may not address issues relevant to neurosurgical procedures. There are very few neurosurgery-specific PROMs that take into account the impact of a neurosurgical procedure on a specific condition.

CONCLUSION: PROMs that currently feature in the neurosurgical literature may not address the specific outcomes relevant to neurosurgical practice. There is an emergent need for generic and disease-specific PROMs to be validated in neurosurgical patients and neurosurgery-specific PROMs developed to address unmet needs of patients undergoing neurosurgical procedures.


Posterior Cervical Fusion Using Cervical Interfacet Spacers in Patients With Symptomatic Cervical Pseudarthrosis

Posterior Cervical Fusion Using Cervical Interfacet Spacers in Patients With Symptomatic Cervical Pseudarthrosis

Neurosurgery 78:661–668, 2016

Posterior cervical fusion with cervical interfacet spacer (CIS) is a novel allograft technology offering the potential to provide indirect neuroforaminal decompression while simultaneously enhancing fusion by placing the allograft in compression.

OBJECTIVE: To analyze the clinical and radiological outcomes after posterior cervical fusion with CIS in patients with symptomatic anterior cervical pseudarthroses.

METHODS: Medical records of patients who underwent posterior cervical fusion with CIS for symptomatic pseudarthrosis after anterior cervical diskectomy and fusion were reviewed. Standardized outcome measures such as visual analog scale (VAS) score for neck and arm pain, Neck Disability Index (NDI), and upright lateral cervical radiographs were reviewed.

RESULTS: There were 19 patients with symptomatic cervical pseudarthrosis. Preoperative symptoms included refractory neck or arm pain. The average follow-up was 20 months (range, 12-56 months). There was improvement in VAS score for neck pain (P < .004), radicular arm pain (P < .007), and NDI score (P < .06) after surgery, with 83%, 72%, and 67% of patients showing improvement in their VAS neck pain, VAS arm pain, and NDI scores, respectively. Fusion rate was high, with fusion occurring at all levels treated for pseudarthrosis. There was a small improvement in cervical lordosis (mean difference, 2 6 5.17; P = .09) and slight worsening of C2-7 sagittal vertical axis after surgery (mean difference, 1.89 6 7.87 mm; P = .43).

CONCLUSION: CIS provides an important fusion technique, allowing placement of an allograft in compression for posterior cervical fusion in patients with anterior cervical pseudarthroses. Although there was improvement in clinical outcome measures after surgery, placement of CIS had no clinically significant impact on cervical lordosis and C2-7 sagittal vertical axis.

Endoscopic, Endonasal Resection of Craniopharyngiomas: Analysis of Outcome Including Extent of Resection, Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak, Return to Preoperative Productivity, and Body Mass Index

Neurosurgery 70:110–124, 2012 DOI: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e31822e8ffc

The endoscopic, endonasal, extended transsphenoidal approach is a minimal-access technique for managing craniopharyngiomas. Outcome measures such as return to employment and body mass index (BMI) have not been reported and are necessary for comparison with open transcranial approaches. Most prior reports of the endoscopic, endonasal approach have reported unacceptably high cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak rates.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the outcome of endoscopic, endonasal surgery in a consecutive series of craniopharyngiomas with special attention to extent of resection, CSF leak, return to employment, and BMI.

METHODS: Twenty-six surgeries were performed on 24 patients at Weill Cornell Medical College-New York Presbyterian Hospital. Five patients had recurrent lesions. Gross-total resection (GTR) was attempted in 21 surgeries. Indications for intended subtotal resection were advanced age, medical comorbidities, preservation of pituitary function, and hypothalamic invasion.

RESULTS: Mean tumor diameter was 2.9 cm. GTR (18 surgeries) or near-total (.95%) resection (2 surgeries) was achieved in 95% when GTR was the goal. Seven patients received postoperative radiation therapy. Mean follow-up was 35 months with no recurrences in GTR cases and stable disease in all patients at last follow-up. Vision improved in 77%. Diabetes insipidus and panhypopituitarism developed in 42% and 38%, respectively. A more than 9% increase in BMI occurred in 39%; 69% returned to their preoperative profession/schooling. The postoperative CSF leak rate was 3.8%.

CONCLUSION: Minimal-access, endoscopic, endonasal surgery for craniopharyngioma can achieve high rates of GTR with low rates of CSF leak. Return to employment and obesity rates are comparable to microscope-assisted transcranial and transsphenoidal reports.