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Open access

Bo Li, Gregory A. Kuzmik, Saman Shabani, Nitin Agarwal, Alysha Jamieson, Thomas Wozny, Simon Ammanuel, Praveen V. Mummaneni, and Dean Chou

It can be difficult to avoid violating the pleura during the retropleural approach to the thoracolumbar spine. In this video, the authors resect a short segment of rib to allow more room for pleural dissection during a minimally invasive (MIS) lateral retropleural approach. After a lateral MIS skin incision, the rib is dissected and removed, clearly identifying the retropleural space. The curvature of the rib can then be followed, decreasing the risk of pleural violation. The pleura can then be mobilized ventrally until the spine is accessed. Managing the diaphragm is also illustrated by separating the fibers without a traditional cut through the muscle.

The video can be found here: https://stream.cadmore.media/r10.3171/2022.3.FOCVID21138

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Austin J. Borja, Ali S. Farooqi, Joshua L. Golubovsky, Gregory Glauser, Krista Strouz, Jan-Karl Burkhardt, Scott D. McClintock, and Neil R. Malhotra

OBJECTIVE

Preoperative prediction of a patient’s postoperative healthcare utilization is challenging, and limited guidance currently exists. The objective of the present study was to assess the capability of individual risk-related patient characteristics, which are available preoperatively, that may predict discharge disposition prior to lumbar fusion.

METHODS

In total, 1066 consecutive patients who underwent single-level, posterior-only lumbar fusion at a university health system were enrolled. Patients were prospectively asked 4 nondemographic questions from the Risk Assessment and Prediction Tool during preoperative office visits to evaluate key risk-related characteristics: baseline walking ability, use of a gait assistive device, reliance on community supports (e.g., Meals on Wheels), and availability of a postoperative home caretaker. The primary outcome was discharge disposition (home vs skilled nursing facility/acute rehabilitation). Logistic regression was performed to analyze the ability of each risk-related characteristic to predict likelihood of home discharge.

RESULTS

Regression analysis demonstrated that improved baseline walking ability (OR 3.17), ambulation without a gait assistive device (OR 3.13), and availability of a postoperative home caretaker (OR 1.99) each significantly predicted an increased likelihood of home discharge (all p < 0.0001). However, reliance on community supports did not significantly predict discharge disposition (p = 0.94).

CONCLUSIONS

Patient mobility and the availability of a postoperative caretaker, when determined preoperatively, strongly predict a patient’s healthcare utilization in the setting of single-level, posterior lumbar fusion. These findings may help surgeons to streamline preoperative clinic workflow and support the patients at highest risk in a targeted fashion.

Open access

Nima Alan, Jared J. Kanter, Lauren Puccio, Sharath Kumar Anand, and Adam S. Kanter

Prone transpsoas lateral lumbar interbody fusion is the newest frontier in surgical approach to the lumbar spine. Prone positioning facilitates segmental lordosis and facile posterior segmental fixation. However, even in experienced hands, transitioning from a lateral decubitus to prone position necessitates alterations to the traditional technique. In this video, the authors highlight the nuances of adopting the prone transpsoas lateral lumbar interbody fusion technique and strategies to overcome them.

The video can be found here: https://stream.cadmore.media/r10.3171/2022.3.FOCVID2224

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Fumiaki Kanamori, Yoshio Araki, Kinya Yokoyama, Kenji Uda, Michihiro Kurimoto, Yoshiki Shiba, Takashi Mamiya, Kai Takayanagi, Kazuki Ishii, Masahiro Nishihori, Takashi Izumi, Sho Okamoto, and Ryuta Saito

OBJECTIVE

After revascularization surgery in pediatric patients with moyamoya disease (MMD), resting and avoiding crying is important. However, this inaction is often difficult because of pain or anxiety. Dexmedetomidine (DEX), which has sedative and analgesic properties, may be useful in reducing those uncomfortable conditions; however, its common side effects include bradycardia and hypotension, which have a risk of decreasing the cerebral blood flow. The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy and safety of using DEX for pediatric patients with MMD in the acute period after revascularization surgery.

METHODS

This retrospective study included pediatric patients with MMD who underwent revascularization surgery. Based on whether DEX was used for light sedation during postoperative days (PODs) 0–1 after extubation, the patients were divided into DEX or control groups. For neurological outcomes, the incidence of symptomatic cerebral infarction and transient neurological events (TNEs) during PODs 0–1 and the entire hospitalization were investigated. In addition, the Richmond Agitation-Sedation Scale (RASS) was used to assess the effect of DEX, and bradycardia and hypotension were evaluated as side effects.

RESULTS

A total of 84 surgical procedures were included in this study (27 in the DEX group and 57 in the control group). During PODs 0–1, symptomatic infarction was not observed in either group. The incidence of TNEs was almost the same in both groups: 2 (7.4%) of the 27 procedures in the DEX group and 4 (7.0%) of the 57 procedures in the control group (p > 0.99). Moreover, the incidences of symptomatic infarction and TNEs during the entire hospitalization did not differ significantly (symptomatic infarction, p > 0.99; TNEs, p = 0.20). Regarding the DEX effect, the median RASS scores during PODs 0–1 were −1.0 (drowsy) in the DEX group and +1.0 (restless) in the control group, showing a significant difference (p < 0.01). Regarding side effects, bradycardia was observed only in 3 (11.1%) of the 27 procedures in the DEX group (p = 0.03), and hypotension was not observed in any of the cases.

CONCLUSIONS

In pediatric patients with MMD who are extubated after revascularization surgery, DEX produced appropriate light sedation and analgesia. The risk for symptomatic infarction is almost the same in cases in which DEX is used and those in which it is not; however, neurosurgeons should be cautious of bradycardia and TNEs as potential side effects.

Open access

Chien-Tung Yang, Cheng-Di Chiu, and Chih-Ying Wu

BACKGROUND

Percutaneous endoscopic lumbar decompression is gaining attention as a minimally invasive surgery. Here, the authors report a rare complication of pneumocephalus caused by vacuum drain after biportal endoscopic spinal surgery (BESS) for lumbar stenosis.

OBSERVATIONS

A 79-year-old woman with spinal stenosis over the L4–5 level received BESS. No visible dural tear was encountered during surgery, and a vacuum drain was placed after surgery. Approximately 150 mL of cerebrospinal fluid was drained on postoperative day 1. Simultaneously, symptoms of intracranial hypotension were noted. Brain computed tomography (CT) revealed pneumocephalus. The patient was advised to have bed rest and hydration, and her symptoms improved subsequently. Follow-up brain CT indicated the resolution of pneumocephalus.

LESSONS

Pneumocephalus after endoscopic lumbar surgery is rare. Dural tear, high rate of normal saline irrigation, and vacuum drain placement are the associated risk factors.

Open access

Lucas Loiola, Vinícius M. Henriques, Carlos A. S. Moreira, Vinícius Gregório, Fernando A. Vasconcelos, Alexandre M. Schmidt, and Fernando Guedes

BACKGROUND

Anterior sacral meningocele (ASM) is a defect in the closure of the neural tube. Patients can be asymptomatic or present with genitourinary, neurological, reproductive, or colorectal dysfunction. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the gold standard test because it can assess communication between the spinal subarachnoid space and the lesion and identify other abnormalities. Surgical correction is the definitive treatment because untreated cases have a mortality rate of more than 30%.

OBSERVATIONS

A 24-year-old woman with Marfan syndrome presented with polyuria, recurrent urinary tract infections, and renal injury for 3 months along with a globose abdomen, with a palpable mass in the middle and lower third of the abdomen that was massive on percussion. MRI showed an ASM consisting of two cystic lesions measuring 15.4 × 14.3 × 15.8 and 6.7 × 6.1 × 5.9 cm, respectively, compressing the distal third of the right ureter and causing a hydroureteronephrosis. Drainage and ligature of the cystic lesion were performed. The urinary outcome was excellent, with full recovery after surgery.

LESSONS

ASM should be suspected in all abdominal masses with progressive symptoms in the setting of Marfan syndrome. Computed tomography and MRI are important to investigate genitourinary anomalies or other types of dysraphism to guide the best surgical approach.

Open access

Bradley Kolb, Daniel Wolfson, Ivan Da Silva, and Stephan A. Munich

BACKGROUND

Multimodal monitoring to guide medical intervention in high-grade aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH) is well described. Multimodal monitoring to guide surgical intervention in high-grade aSAH has been less studied.

OBSERVATIONS

Intracranial pressure (ICP), brain lactate to pyruvate ratio (L/P ratio), and brain parenchymal oxygen tension (pO2) were used as surrogates for clinical status in a comatose man after high-grade aSAH. Acute changes in ICP, L/P ratio, and pO2 were used to identify brain injury from both malignant cerebral edema and delayed cerebral ischemia, respectively, and decompressive hemicraniectomy with clot evacuation and intraarterial nimodipine were used to treat these conditions. The patient showed marked improvement in multimodal parameters following each intervention and eventually recovered to a modified Rankin score of 2.

LESSONS

In patients with a limited neurological examination due to severe acute brain injury in the setting of aSAH, multimodal monitoring can be used to guide surgical treatment. With prompt, aggressive, maximal medical and surgical interventions, otherwise healthy individuals may retain the capacity for close to full recovery from seemingly catastrophic aSAH.

Open access

Douglas M. Zoerner, Taylor Reardon, and Brandon A. Miller

BACKGROUND

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (VST) is a complication of head injury and can be secondary to sinus compression by depressed skull fractures. Fracture elevation is a treatment option for VST secondary to extrinsic compression, but conservative management may also be effective. Venous sinuses can also be lacerated from skull fractures, resulting in epidural or subdural hematomas. The authors presented a case of sagittal sinus injury and thrombosis from a depressed skull fracture that caused a subgaleal hematoma. The injury was successfully managed conservatively.

OBSERVATIONS

A 14-year-old boy presented after a head injury with a diastatic, depressed parietal bone fracture. Computed tomography venogram showed disruption and occlusion of the superior sagittal sinus with a subgaleal hematoma in continuity with the injured sagittal sinus. Because of concern for hemorrhage if tamponade on the sinus was removed, the patient was treated nonsurgically. At follow-up, the sinus had recanalized and the fracture had healed.

LESSONS

Skull fractures with underlying sinus thrombosis can be managed conservatively with good outcome. Careful assessment for venous sinus injury should be made before undertaking fracture elevation to relieve sinus compression.

Open access

Matthew J. Hatter, Ryan S. Beyer, Gaston Camino-Willhuber, Austin Franklin, Nolan J. Brown, Sohaib Hashmi, Michael Oh, Nitin Bhatia, and Yu-Po Lee

BACKGROUND

Primary spinal infections (PSIs) are a group of uncommon but serious infectious diseases considered more prevalent and aggressive among patients with chronic immunocompromised states. Association of PSI and solid organ transplant has not been systematically analyzed. The authors performed a systematic review analyzing clinical presentation and mortality of patients with PSI in the setting of solid organ transplant.

OBSERVATIONS

PSIs in patients with immunosuppressive therapy, such as those with solid organ transplant, may behave differently in terms of epidemiology, clinical presentation, and outcomes compared with nonimmunosuppressed patients. Overall PSI in solid organ transplant patients is associated with a high rate of neurological compromise, postoperative complications, and mortality.

LESSONS

Accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment of PSI require a multidisciplinary effort. Localized pain is the most frequently reported symptom associated with PSI. As opposed to PSI in patients without transplant, inflammatory and infectious markers such as white blood cells and C-reactive protein are often not elevated. Furthermore, the causative microorganism profile varies significantly when compared to pyogenic spinal infection in patients without transplant. Aspergillus species was responsible for spondylodiscitis in transplant patients in more than 50% of cases, and the incidence of Aspergillus infection is projected to rise in the coming years.

Restricted access

James Mooney, James Pate, Ian Cummins, M. Chandler McLeod, and Sara Gould

OBJECTIVE

Many studies have identified factors associated with increased symptom burden and prolonged recovery after pediatric and adolescent concussion. Few have systematically examined the effects of prior concussion on these outcomes in patients with concussion due to any mechanism. An improved understanding of the short- and long-term effects of a multiple concussion history will improve counseling and management of this subgroup of patients.

METHODS

A retrospective review of adolescent and young adult acute concussion patients presenting to the multidisciplinary concussion clinic between 2018 and 2019 was conducted at a single center. Patient demographic data, medical history including prior concussion, initial symptom severity score (SSS), injury mechanisms, and recovery times were collected. Univariate and multivariable analyses were conducted to identify associations of history of prior concussion and patient and injury characteristics with symptom score and recovery time.

RESULTS

A total of 266 patients with an average age of 15.4 years (age range 13–27 years) were included. Prior concussion was reported in 35% of patients. The number of prior concussions per patient was not significantly associated with presenting symptom severity, recovery time, or recovery within 28 days. Male sex and sports-related concussion (SRC) were associated with lower presenting SSS and shorter recovery time on univariate but not multivariable analysis. However, compared to non–sport concussion mechanisms, SRC was associated with 2.3 times higher odds of recovery within 28 days (p = 0.04). A history of psychiatric disorders was associated with higher SSS in univariate analysis and longer recovery time in univariate and multivariable analyses. Multivariable log-linear regression also demonstrated 5 times lower odds of recovery within 28 days for those with a psychiatric history.

CONCLUSIONS

The results of this study demonstrated that an increasing number of prior concussions was associated with a trend toward higher presenting SSS after youth acute concussion but did not show a significant association with recovery time or delayed (> 28 days) recovery. Presence of psychiatric history was found to be significantly associated with longer recovery and lower odds of early (≤ 28 days) recovery. Future prospective, long-term, and systematic study is necessary to determine the optimal counseling and management of adolescent and young adult patients with a history of multiple concussions.