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Martin N. Stienen, Menno R. Germans, Olivia Zindel-Geisseler, Noemi Dannecker, Yannick Rothacher, Ladina Schlosser, Julia Velz, Martina Sebök, Noemi Eggenberger, Adrien May, Julien Haemmerli, Philippe Bijlenga, Karl Schaller, Ursula Guerra-Lopez, Rodolfo Maduri, Valérie Beaud, Khalid Al-Taha, Roy Thomas Daniel, Alessio Chiappini, Stefania Rossi, Thomas Robert, Sara Bonasia, Johannes Goldberg, Christian Fung, David Bervini, Marie Elise Maradan-Gachet, Klemens Gutbrod, Nicolai Maldaner, Marian C. Neidert, Severin Früh, Marc Schwind, Oliver Bozinov, Peter Brugger, Emanuela Keller, Angelina Marr, Sébastien Roux, Luca Regli, and

OBJECTIVE

While prior retrospective studies have suggested that delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) is a predictor of neuropsychological deficits after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH), all studies to date have shown a high risk of bias. This study was designed to determine the impact of DCI on the longitudinal neuropsychological outcome after aSAH, and importantly, it includes a baseline examination after aSAH but before DCI onset to reduce the risk of bias.

METHODS

In a prospective, multicenter study (8 Swiss centers), 112 consecutive alert patients underwent serial neuropsychological assessments (Montreal Cognitive Assessment [MoCA]) before and after the DCI period (first assessment, < 72 hours after aSAH; second, 14 days after aSAH; third, 3 months after aSAH). The authors compared standardized MoCA scores and determined the likelihood for a clinically meaningful decline of ≥ 2 points from baseline in patients with DCI versus those without.

RESULTS

The authors screened 519 patients, enrolled 128, and obtained complete data in 112 (87.5%; mean [± SD] age 53.9 ± 13.9 years; 66.1% female; 73% World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies [WFNS] grade I, 17% WFNS grade II, 10% WFNS grades III–V), of whom 30 (26.8%) developed DCI. MoCA z-scores were worse in the DCI group at baseline (−2.6 vs −1.4, p = 0.013) and 14 days (−3.4 vs −0.9, p < 0.001), and 3 months (−0.8 vs 0.0, p = 0.037) after aSAH. Patients with DCI were more likely to experience a decline of ≥ 2 points in MoCA score at 14 days after aSAH (adjusted OR [aOR] 3.02, 95% CI 1.07–8.54; p = 0.037), but the likelihood was similar to that in patients without DCI at 3 months after aSAH (aOR 1.58, 95% CI 0.28–8.89; p = 0.606).

CONCLUSIONS

Aneurysmal SAH patients experiencing DCI have worse neuropsychological function before and until 3 months after the DCI period. DCI itself is responsible for a temporary and clinically meaningful decline in neuropsychological function, but its effect on the MoCA score could not be measured at the time of the 3-month follow-up in patients with low-grade aSAH with little or no impairment of consciousness. Whether these findings can be extrapolated to patients with high-grade aSAH remains unclear.

Clinical trial registration no.: NCT03032471 (ClinicalTrials.gov)

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Pascal Thomann, Levin Häni, Sonja Vulcu, Alessa Schütz, Maximilian Frosch, Christopher Marvin Jesse, Marwan El-Koussy, Nicole Söll, Arsany Hakim, Andreas Raabe, and Philippe Schucht

OBJECTIVE

The management of asymptomatic intracranial meningiomas is controversial. Through the assessment of growth predictors, the authors aimed to create the basis for practicable clinical pathways for the management of these tumors.

METHODS

The authors volumetrically analyzed meningiomas radiologically diagnosed at their institution between 2003 and 2015. The primary endpoint was growth of tumor volume. The authors used significant variables from the multivariable regression model to construct a decision tree based on the exhaustive Chi-Square Automatic Interaction Detection (CHAID) algorithm.

RESULTS

Of 240 meningiomas, 159 (66.3%) demonstrated growth during a mean observation period of 46.9 months. On multivariable logistic regression analysis, older age (OR 0.979 [95% CI 0.958–1.000], p = 0.048) and presence of calcification (OR 0.442 [95% CI 0.224–0.872], p = 0.019) had a negative predictive value for tumor growth, while T2-signal iso-/hyperintensity (OR 4.415 [95% CI 2.056–9.479], p < 0.001) had a positive predictive value. A decision tree model yielded three growth risk groups based on T2 signal intensity and presence of calcifications. The median tumor volume doubling time (Td) was 185.7 months in the low-risk, 100.1 months in the intermediate-risk, and 51.7 months in the high-risk group (p < 0.001). Whereas 0% of meningiomas in the low- and intermediate-risk groups had a Td of ≤ 12 months, the percentage was 8.9% in the high-risk group (p = 0.021).

CONCLUSIONS

Most meningiomas demonstrated growth during follow-up. The absence of calcifications and iso-/hyperintensity on T2-weighted imaging offer a practical way of stratifying meningiomas as low, intermediate, or high risk. Small tumors in the low- or intermediate-risk categories can be monitored with longer follow-up intervals.

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Elias Elias, Shay Bess, Breton Line, Virginie Lafage, Renaud Lafage, Eric Klineberg, Han Jo Kim, Peter G. Passias, Zeina Nasser, Jeffrey L. Gum, Khal Kebaish, Robert Eastlack, Alan H. Daniels, Gregory Mundis Jr., Richard Hostin, Themistocles S. Protopsaltis, Alex Soroceanu, D. Kojo Hamilton, Michael P. Kelly, Munish Gupta, Robert Hart, Frank J. Schwab, Douglas Burton, Christopher P. Ames, Christopher I. Shaffrey, Justin S. Smith, and

OBJECTIVE

The current literature has primarily focused on the 2-year outcomes of operative adult spinal deformity (ASD) treatment. Longer term durability is important given the invasiveness, complications, and costs of these procedures. The aim of this study was to assess minimum 3-year outcomes and complications of ASD surgery.

METHODS

Operatively treated ASD patients were assessed at baseline, follow-up, and through mailings. Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) included scores on the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), Scoliosis Research Society–22r (SRS-22r) questionnaire, mental component summary (MCS) and physical component summary (PCS) of the SF-36, and numeric rating scale (NRS) for back and leg pain. Complications were classified as perioperative (≤ 90 days), delayed (90 days to 2 years), and long term (≥ 2 years). Analyses focused on patients with minimum 3-year follow-up.

RESULTS

Of 569 patients, 427 (75%) with minimum 3-year follow-up (mean ± SD [range] 4.1 ± 1.1 [3.0–9.6] years) had a mean age of 60.8 years and 75% were women. Operative treatment included a posterior approach for 426 patients (99%), with a mean ± SD 12 ± 4 fusion levels. Anterior lumbar interbody fusion was performed in 35 (8%) patients, and 89 (21%) underwent 3-column osteotomy. All PROMs improved significantly from baseline to last follow-up, including scores on ODI (45.4 to 30.5), PCS (31.0 to 38.5), MCS (45.3 to 50.6), SRS-22r total (2.7 to 3.6), SRS-22r activity (2.8 to 3.5), SRS-22r pain (2.3 to 3.4), SRS-22r appearance (2.4 to 3.5), SRS-22r mental (3.4 to 3.7), SRS-22r satisfaction (2.7 to 4.1), NRS for back pain (7.1 to 3.8), and NRS for leg pain (4.8 to 3.0) (all p < 0.001). Degradations in some outcome measures were observed between the 2-year and last follow-up evaluations, but the magnitudes of these degradations were modest and arguably not clinically significant. Overall, 277 (65%) patients had at least 1 complication, including 185 (43%) perioperative, 118 (27%) delayed, and 56 (13%) long term. Notably, the 142 patients who did not achieve 3-year follow-up were similar to the study patients in terms of demographic characteristics, deformities, and baseline PROMs and had similar rates and types of complications.

CONCLUSIONS

This prospective multicenter analysis demonstrated that operative ASD treatment provided significant improvement of health-related quality of life at minimum 3-year follow-up (mean 4.1 years), suggesting that the benefits of surgery for ASD remain durable at longer follow-up. These findings should prove useful for counseling, cost-effectiveness assessments, and efforts to improve the safety of care.

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Eric J. Chalif, Ramin A. Morshed, Jacob S. Young, Alexander F. Haddad, Saket Jain, and Manish K. Aghi

OBJECTIVE

Decision-making in how to manage pituitary adenomas (PAs) in the elderly (age ≥ 65 years) can be challenging given the benign nature of these tumors and concerns about surgical morbidity in these patients. In this study involving a large multicenter national registry, the authors examined treatment trends and surgical outcomes in elderly compared to nonelderly patients.

METHODS

The National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) was queried for adults aged ≥ 18 years with PA diagnosed by MRI (in observed cases) or pathology (in surgical cases) from 2004 to 2016. Univariate and multivariate logistic regressions were used to evaluate the prognostic impact of age and other covariates on 30- and 90-day postsurgical mortality (30M/90M), prolonged (≥ 5 days) length of inpatient hospital stay (LOS), and extent of resection.

RESULTS

A total of 96,399 cases met the study inclusion criteria, 27% of which were microadenomas and 73% of which were macroadenomas. Among these cases were 25,464 elderly patients with PA. Fifty-three percent of these elderly patients were treated with surgery, 1.9% underwent upfront radiotherapy, and 44.9% were observed without treatment. Factors associated with surgical treatment compared to observation included younger age, higher income, private insurance, higher Charlson-Deyo comorbidity (CD) score, larger tumor size, and receiving treatment at an academic hospital (each p ≤ 0.01). Elderly patients undergoing surgery had increased rates of 30M (1.4% vs 0.6%), 90M (2.8% vs 0.9%), prolonged LOS (26.1% vs 23.0%), and subtotal resection (27.2% vs 24.5%; each p ≤ 0.01) compared to those in nonelderly PA patients. On multivariate analysis, age, tumor size, and CD score were independently associated with worse postsurgical mortality. High-volume facilities (HVFs) had significantly better outcomes than low-volume facilities: 30M (0.9% vs 1.8%, p < 0.001), 90M (2.0% vs 3.5%, p < 0.001), and prolonged LOS (21.8% vs 30.3%, p < 0.001). A systematic literature review composed of 22 studies demonstrated an elderly PA patient mortality rate of 0.7%, which is dramatically lower than real-world NCDB outcomes and speaks to substantial selection bias in the previously published literature.

CONCLUSIONS

The study findings confirm that elderly patients with PA are at higher risk for postoperative mortality than younger patients. Surgical risk in this age group may have been previously underreported in the literature. Resection at HVFs better reflects these historical rates, which has important implications in elderly patients for whom surgery is being considered.

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Huy Gia Vuong, Hieu Trong Le, Andrew Jea, Rene McNall-Knapp, and Ian F. Dunn

OBJECTIVE

The prognostic significance and genetic characteristics of H3 K27M–mutant diffuse midline gliomas (DMGs) in different anatomical locations requires further clarification. In this study, the authors integrated published data to investigate the differences between brainstem, thalamic, and spinal cord tumors.

METHODS

PubMed and Web of Science databases were used to search for eligible articles. Studies were included if they provided individual patient data of H3 K27M–mutant DMGs with available tumor locations. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were computed to investigate the survival of each subgroup.

RESULTS

Eight hundred four tumors were identified, including 467, 228, and 109 in the brainstem, thalamus, and spine, respectively. Brainstem tumors were primarily observed in young children, while patients with thalamic and spinal cord tumors afflicted older patients. The Ki-67 labeling index was highest in brainstem tumors. Compared to patients with brainstem tumors, those with thalamic (HR 0.573, 95% CI 0.463–0.709; p < 0.001) and spinal cord lesions (HR 0.460, 95% CI 0.341–0.621; p < 0.001) had a significantly better survival. When patients were stratified by age groups, superior overall survival (OS) of thalamic tumors was observed in comparison to brainstem tumors in young children and adolescents, whereas adult tumors had uniform OS regardless of anatomical sites. Genetically, mutations in HIST1H3B/C (H3.1) and ACVR1 genes were mostly detected in brainstem tumors, whereas spinal cord tumors were characterized by a higher incidence of mutations in the TERT promoter.

CONCLUSIONS

This study demonstrated that H3 K27M–mutant DMGs have distinct clinical characteristics, prognoses, and molecular profiles in different anatomical locations.

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Bernardo de Andrada Pereira, Piyanat Wangsawatwong, Jennifer N. Lehrman, Anna G. U. Sawa, S. Harrison Farber, Jakub Godzik, Luke K. O’Neill, Juan S. Uribe, Brian P. Kelly, and Jay D. Turner

OBJECTIVE

Changes to segmental lordosis at a single level may affect adjacent-level biomechanics and overall spinal alignment with an iatrogenic domino effect commonly seen in adult spinal deformity. This study investigated the effects of different segmental angles of single-level lumbar fixation on stability and principal strain across the surface of the adjacent-level disc.

METHODS

Seven human cadaveric L3–S1 specimens were instrumented at L4–5 and tested in 3 conditions: 1) neutral native angle ("neutral"), 2) increasing angle by 5° of lordosis ("lordosis"), and 3) decreasing angle by 5° of kyphosis ("kyphosis"). Pure moment loads (7.5 Nm) were applied in flexion, extension, lateral bending, and axial rotation, followed by 400 N of axial compression alone and together with pure moments. Range of motion (ROM), principal maximum strain (E1), and principal minimum strain (E2) across different surface subregions of the upper adjacent-level disc (L3–4) were optically assessed. Larger magnitudes of either E1 or E2 indicate larger tissue deformations and represent indirect measures of increased stress.

RESULTS

At the superior adjacent level, a significant increase in ROM was observed in kyphosis and lordosis versus neutral in flexion (p ≤ 0.001) and extension (p ≤ 0.02). ROM was increased in lordosis versus neutral (p = 0.03) and kyphosis (p = 0.004) during compression. ROM increased in kyphosis versus neutral and lordosis (both p = 0.03) in compression plus extension. Lordosis resulted in increased E1 across the midposterior subregion of the disc (Q3) versus neutral during right lateral bending (p = 0.04); lordosis and kyphosis resulted in decreased E1 in Q3 versus neutral with compression (p ≤ 0.03). Lordosis decreased E1 in Q3 versus neutral during compression plus flexion (p = 0.01), whereas kyphosis increased E1 in all quartiles and increased E2 in the midanterior subregion versus lordosis in compression plus flexion (p ≤ 0.047). Kyphosis decreased E1 in Q3 (p = 0.02) and E2 in the anterior-most subregion of the disc (Q1) (p = 0.006) versus neutral, whereas lordosis decreased E1 in Q3 (p = 0.008) versus neutral in compression plus extension.

CONCLUSIONS

Lumbar spine monosegmental fixation with 5° offset from the neutral individual segmental angle altered the motion and principal strain magnitudes at the upper adjacent disc, with induced kyphosis resulting in larger principal strains compared with lordosis. Segmental alignment of single-level fusion influences adjacent-segment biomechanics, and suboptimal alignment may play a role in the clinical development of adjacent-segment disease.

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Josue M. Avecillas-Chasin, Christopher R. Honey, Manraj K. S. Heran, and Marie T. Krüger

OBJECTIVE

In patients with essential tremor (ET) treated with standard deep brain stimulation (sDBS) whose ET had progressed and who no longer received optimal benefit from sDBS, directional deep brain stimulation (dDBS) may provide better tremor control. Current steering may provide better coverage of subcortical structures related to tremor control in patients with ET and significant progression without optimal response to sDBS.

METHODS

This study included 6 patients with ET initially treated with sDBS whose tremor later progressed and who then underwent reimplantation with dDBS to optimize their tremor control. To investigate the differences in the local effects of sDBS and dDBS, the authors generated the volume of tissue activation (VTA) to calculate the sweet spots associated with the best possible tremor control with no side effects. Then, to investigate the anatomical structures associated with maximal tremor control, the white matter pathways of the posterior subthalamic areas (PSAs) were generated and their involvement with the sDBS and dDBS sweet spots was calculated.

RESULTS

Tremor improvement was significantly better with dDBS (68.4%) than with sDBS (48.7%) (p = 0.017). The sDBS sweet spot was located within the ventral intermediate nucleus, whereas the sweet spot of the dDBS was mainly located within the PSA. The sweet spots of both sDBS and dDBS involved a similar portion of the cerebellothalamic pathway. However, the dDBS had greater involvement of the pallidofugal pathways than the sDBS.

CONCLUSIONS

In patients with ET treated with sDBS who later had ET progression, dDBS provided better tremor control, which was related to directionality and a more ventral position. The involvement of both the cerebellothalamic and pallidofugal pathways obtained with dDBS is associated with additional improvement over the sDBS.

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Joseph Schaefer, Elias Atallah, Eric Tecce, Sara Thalheimer, James Harrop, and Joshua E. Heller

OBJECTIVE

There is currently a lack of consensus on the utility of intraoperative neuromonitoring (IONM) for decompression of Chiari type I malformation (CM-I). Commonly used monitoring modalities include somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs), motor evoked potentials (MEPs), and brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEPs). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utility of IONM in preventing neurological injury for CM-I decompression.

METHODS

The authors conducted a retrospective study of a population of adult patients (ages 17–76 years) diagnosed with CM-I between 2013 and 2021. IONM modalities included SSEPs, MEPs, and/or BAEPs. Prepositioning baseline signals and operative alerts of significant signal attenuation were recorded.

RESULTS

Ninety-three patients (average age 38.4 ± 14.6 years) underwent a suboccipital craniectomy for CM-I decompression. Eighty-two (88.2%) of 93 patients underwent C1 laminectomy, 8 (8.6%) underwent C1 and C2 laminectomy, and 4 (4.3%) underwent suboccipital craniectomy with concomitant cervical decompression and fusion in the setting of degenerative cervical spondylosis. Radiographically, the average cerebellar tonsillar ectopia/descent was 1.1 ± 0.5 cm and 53 (57.0%) of 93 patients presented with a syrinx. The average number of vertebral levels traversed by the syrinx was 5.3 ± 3.5, and the average maximum width of the syrinx was 5.8 ± 3.3 mm. There was one instance (1/93, 1.1%) of an MEP alert, which resolved spontaneously after 10 minutes in a patient who had concomitant stenosis due to pannus formation at C1–2. No patient developed a permanent neurological complication.

CONCLUSIONS

There were no permanent complications related to intraoperative neurological injury. Transient fluctuations in IONM signals can be detected without clinical significance. The authors suggest that CM-I suboccipital decompression surgery may be performed safely without IONM. The use of IONM in patients with additional occipitocervical pathology should be left as an option to the performing surgeon on a case-by-case basis.

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Kareem El Naamani, Ching-Jen Chen, Rawad Abbas, Ahmad Sweid, Georgios S. Sioutas, Khodr Badih, Sunidhi Ramesh, Stavropoula I. Tjoumakaris, M. Reid Gooch, Nabeel A. Herial, Hekmat Zarzour, Richard F. Schmidt, Robert H. Rosenwasser, and Pascal M. Jabbour

OBJECTIVE

Stent-assisted coil (SAC) embolization has been the mainstay endovascular treatment for bifurcation aneurysms. The recent introduction of the Woven EndoBridge (WEB) device has presented an alternative endovascular treatment modality for these aneurysms. Direct comparisons of outcomes between these two modalities are limited in the literature. Here, the authors compared the outcomes of bifurcation aneurysms treated with SAC and WEB devices.

METHODS

This retrospective single-center study comprised 148 bifurcation aneurysms that were treated endovascularly with SAC or WEB devices between 2011 and 2019. The primary outcome was complete occlusion of the aneurysm at 6 months on catheter angiography.

RESULTS

The SAC and WEB cohorts comprised 85 and 63 aneurysms, respectively. The baseline characteristics were well balanced after inverse probability weight (IPW) adjustment, except for smoking status. The 6-month complete occlusion rate was higher in the WEB cohort than the SAC cohort (67.4% vs 40.6%; unadjusted OR [95% CI] 3.014 [1.385–6.563], p = 0.005). However, this difference in complete occlusion rates did not remain significant after IPW adjustment and multiple imputations. The neck remnant rate was lower in the WEB cohort than the SAC cohort (20% vs 50%; OR [95% CI] 0.250 [0.107–0.584], p = 0.001), and this difference remained significant after IPW adjustment (OR [95% CI] 0.304 [0.116–0.795], p = 0.015) and multiple imputations.

CONCLUSIONS

Use of SAC and WEB demonstrated comparable 6-month complete occlusion rates for bifurcation aneurysms. WEB appeared to be associated with a lower rate of neck remnant at 6 and 12 months compared with SAC. WEB was also associated with fewer complications and decreased retreatment rates compared with SAC.

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Koichi Hagiwara, Takashi Kamada, Satoshi O. Suzuki, Ayako Miyoshi, Hideaki Tanaka, Hiroshi Shigeto, Shinji Ohara, and Naoki Akamatsu

BACKGROUND

Polymorphous low-grade neuroepithelial tumor of the young (PLNTY) is a newly identified low-grade brain tumor with frequent epileptic presentation. Despite the facilitated use of invasive electroencephalography owing to the growing availability of stereo-electroencephalography (SEEG), intracranial features of tumor-related seizures are still scarcely described. This report provides the first description of SEEG-recorded seizures in PLNTY to provide an insight into its surgical strategy.

OBSERVATIONS

Spontaneous clinical seizures were recorded with SEEG in a young adult patient with drug-resistant epilepsy associated with a PLNTY in the left lateral temporal cortex. The seizure onset was characterized by low-voltage fast activity (LVFA) and showed eccentric localization with respect to the tumor: LVFA was localized in the anterior portion of the tumor and spread toward the adjacent polar cortex. The language risks associated with the resection of the posterior temporal cortex could thus be minimized.

LESSONS

PLNTY can show a focal and eccentric seizure-onset zone around the tumor. The present findings serve to improve the functional and seizure outcomes using the staged invasive approach in PLNTY.