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Open access

Lead toxicity due to retained intracranial bullet fragments: illustrative case

Daniel M. Aaronson, Ahmed J. Awad, and Hirad S. Hedayat

BACKGROUND

Lead toxicity (plumbism) secondary to retained lead bullet fragments is a rare complication in patients with gunshot wounds. To the authors’ knowledge, there has been no definitive case reported of lead toxicity due to retained intracranial bullet fragments.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors reported the case of a 23-year-old man who presented after being found down. Computed tomography scanning of the head revealed bullet fragments within the calvaria adjacent to the left transverse sinus. During follow-up, he developed symptoms of plumbism with paresthesias in his bilateral hands and thighs, abdominal cramping, labile mood, and intermittent psychosis. Plumbism was confirmed with sequentially elevated blood lead levels (BLLs). The patient opted for surgical removal of the bullet fragments, which led to reduction in BLLs and resolution of his symptoms.

LESSONS

Although rare, lead toxicity from retained intracranial bullet fragments should be considered in patients who have suffered a gunshot wound to the head and have symptoms of lead toxicity with elevated BLLs. For safe and accessible intracranial bullet fragments in patients with plumbism, surgical intervention may be indicated.

Open access

Clival intraosseous myxoma treated with an endoscopic endonasal approach: illustrative case

Mokshal H. Porwal, Daniel M. Aaronson, Abrahim N. Razzak, and Nathan T. Zwagerman

BACKGROUND

Solitary lesions of the clivus, especially nonchordomatous ones, are exceptionally rare pathologies representing only 0.1%–0.2% of intracranial tumors that may present diagnostic and therapeutic challenges. Intraosseous myxomas are benign tumors arising from mesenchymal cells with an unknown pathophysiology.

OBSERVATIONS

In this article, a 15-year-old male with clival intraosseous myxoma who was treated via an endoscopic endonasal surgical approach is presented. The patient became symptomatic after a baseball struck his head, leading to throbbing headaches and visual difficulties for tracking objects. Examination noted diplopia, cranial nerve VI palsy, and ptosis. After imaging revealed a tumor extending to the left cavernous sinus with bulging of the dorsal clivus against the basilar artery/ventral pons, resection was performed. Postoperatively, the patient noted ocular motility and alignment improvement without further complications.

LESSONS

Clival masses present with symptoms from compromised neurovascular structures including visual disturbances and trigeminal sensory deficits. Given the rarity of these entities, patients may postpone further treatment until workup; this patient was misdiagnosed for possible concussion until several weeks passed. A PubMed database review of cranial myxoma cases was conducted to identify solitary clival intraosseous myxoma cases. This case is one of the few in which this pathology was treated through an endoscopic endonasal operative approach without complications, demonstrating its safety and effectiveness.

Open access

Resection of a large thoracolumbar intradural ependymoma: a 2D operative video

Daniel M. Aaronson, Brandon Laing, Randall Treffy, and Saman Shabani

In this video, the authors present the resection of a large thoracolumbar intradural ependymoma in a 33-year-old female. The patient underwent T9–L3 laminectomies, intradural tumor resection, and posterior instrumented fixation and fusion. The surgical procedure aimed to relieve the mass effect, obtain a diagnosis, prevent further neurological decline, and achieve a potential curative resection. The pathology confirmed a myxopapillary ependymoma, a rare tumor with a preference for the conus medullaris, cauda equina, or filum terminale. The video provides insights into the case, surgical steps, clinical outcomes, and background information on myxopapillary ependymomas and treatment options.