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Open access

Successful surgical management of a superior cerebellar artery aneurysm in a patient with Marfan syndrome: illustrative case

Fangjun Liu, Mengqing Hu, Daling Ruan, Xiaoling Ruan, Ting Lei, and Xiang’en Shi

BACKGROUND

Marfan syndrome, a connective tissue disorder, poses unique challenges in neurosurgery, given the fragility of vascular structures. Superior cerebellar artery (SCA) aneurysms in patients with the syndrome are rare and present distinct surgical difficulties, necessitating innovative approaches.

OBSERVATIONS

A 29-year-old male with Marfan syndrome presented with a subarachnoid hemorrhage from a ruptured SCA aneurysm. Given the lack of a defined aneurysm neck and the small diameter of the SCA, standard clipping and endovascular therapies were unsuitable. A microsurgical approach using microsutures was successfully employed, effectively managing the aneurysm while preserving the parent artery.

LESSONS

This case underscores the efficacy of the microsuture technique in complex neurosurgical scenarios, particularly in patients with connective tissue disorders such as Marfan syndrome. The adaptability of surgical strategies, as demonstrated in this case, is crucial for achieving successful outcomes in patients with unique anatomical challenges.

Open access

Supracerebellar infratentorial resection of a torcular lesion causing fulminant intracranial hypertension: illustrative case

Jonathan Dallas, Jessica R Lane, Benjamin S Hopkins, Melinda Chang, Mark Borchert, Nestor R Gonzalez, Peter A Chiarelli, and Jason K Chu

BACKGROUND

Venous sinus stenosis has been implicated in intracranial hypertension and can lead to papilledema and blindness. The authors report the unique case of a cerebellar transtentorial lesion resulting in venous sinus stenosis in the torcula and bilateral transverse sinuses that underwent resection.

OBSERVATIONS

A 5-year-old male presented with subacute vision loss and bilateral papilledema. Imaging demonstrated a lesion causing mass effect on the torcula/transverse sinuses and findings of increased intracranial pressure (ICP). A lumbar puncture confirmed elevated pressure, and the patient underwent bilateral optic nerve sheath fenestration. Cerebral angiography and venous manometry showed elevated venous sinus pressures suggestive of venous hypertension. The patient underwent a craniotomy and supracerebellar/infratentorial approach. A stalk emanating from the cerebellum through the tentorium was identified and divided. Postoperative magnetic resonance imaging showed decreased lesion size and improved sinus patency. Papilledema resolved and other findings of elevated ICP improved. Pathology was consistent with atrophic cerebellar cortex. Serial imaging over 6 months demonstrated progressive decrease in the lesion with concurrent improvements in sinus patency.

LESSONS

Although uncommon, symptoms of intracranial hypertension in patients with venous sinus lesions should prompt additional workup ranging from dedicated venous imaging to assessments of ICP and venous manometry.

Open access

Microsurgical resection of a ruptured intraventricular arteriovenous malformation in a neonate: considerations in management. Illustrative case

Lauren Stone, Reid Colliander, Melissa A LoPresti, Ali Shaibani, and Sandi Lam

BACKGROUND

Arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) are the most common cause of intracranial hemorrhage in children, although they are rarer in neonates. Age, location, lesion architecture, and rupture status define treatment options. Sparse literature exists to guide the management of clinically symptomatic intraventricular AVM rupture in neonates. We highlight the case of a neonate with a ruptured intraventricular AVM to showcase considerations in treatment, discuss surgical technique, and help guide management.

OBSERVATIONS

An 18-day-old female presented with lethargy in extremis and was found to have new intraventricular hemorrhage. Angiogram revealed a Spetzler-Martin grade 2 AVM with a right posterior choroidal feeder and deep venous drainage within the ventricle. Her age limited radiosurgical and endovascular interventions. She underwent an interhemispheric, transcollosal, intraventricular approach for complete AVM resection. Perioperative care was managed by a multidisciplinary team, successfully mitigating the patient’s high risk of hemovascular collapse.

LESSONS

Stereotactic radiosurgery, endovascular embolization, and microsurgery are options for AVM obliteration, and multimodal therapy must be tailored to the lesion and patient. Conservative management can also be considered. Each intervention carries risks and varying likelihoods of success. Balancing these outcomes is challenging without definitive, high-quality, evidence-based guidance. The best treatment maximizes the chance of AVM obliteration while minimizing morbidity.

Open access

Spontaneous pseudoaneurysm of the superficial temporal artery in neurofibromatosis type 1: illustrative case

Fang Shen, Shi-ze Li, Yuan-yuan Shan, Xiao Ji, and Han-song Sheng

BACKGROUND

A pseudoaneurysm of the superficial temporal artery is an uncommon clinical entity that has largely been linked with direct traumatic causes. Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1)-related vasculopathy is a rare cause of idiopathic arterial bleeding in the craniofacial region.

OBSERVATIONS

A 46-year-old male with clinical features of NF1 presented to the hospital with an enlarging and tender right temporal mass without a history of trauma. Computed tomography angiography suggested the development of a pseudoaneurysm, and surgery was performed to resect the mass. Histopathological examinations showed focal interruption of the epithelium layer and elastic lamina, well-demarcated thickening of the smooth muscle layers of the arterial wall, supporting the diagnosis of pseudoaneurysm.

LESSONS

NF1-associated vasculopathy is likely the predisposing factor for the development of a superficial temporal artery pseudoaneurysm.

Open access

Spinal arteriovenous malformation with a calcified nodule: illustrative case

Ping-Chuan Liu, Chung-Chia Huang, and Ching-Lin Chen

BACKGROUND

This article describes a rare case of cervical spinal arteriovenous malformation (AVM) mimicking a neurogenic spinal tumor.

OBSERVATIONS

A 22-year-old female presenting with a C6–7 AVM with a calcification nodule experienced new-onset acute right upper radiculopathy associated with extradural compression of the spinal cord. Note that spinal AVMs with a calcified nodule are rare. Endovascular embolization is generally used to relieve the symptoms of AVM; however, this procedure cannot relieve cord compression, particularly in cases complicated by calcified nodules. This article discusses treatment options.

LESSONS

Decompression surgery is preferable to endovascular embolization because it alleviates symptoms while preventing cord compression and minimizing the risk of recurrence.

Open access

Coexisting filum terminale arteriovenous fistula and filum terminale lipoma treated with single-stage surgery: illustrative case

Hiroki Yamazaki, Tomohiko Ozaki, Tomoki Kidani, Yosuke Fujimi, Masahiro Nonaka, Masao Umegaki, Chisato Yokota, and Toshiyuki Fujinaka

BACKGROUND

Both filum terminale arteriovenous fistulas (FTAVFs) and filum terminale lipomas (FTLs) are rare. Because of this rarity, there is a paucity of data regarding concomitant FTAVF and FTL, and the optimal treatment remains to be defined. The authors describe a patient with coexisting FTAVF and FTL treated with single-stage surgery.

OBSERVATIONS

A man in his 70s was referred to the authors’ department because of a suspected spinal vascular malformation seen on magnetic resonance imaging that was performed to investigate lower limb weakness, intermittent claudication, and urinary incontinence. Previous imaging had shown a terminal lipoma with an internal flow void. Computed tomography angiography and digital subtraction angiography revealed an FTAVF, the feeder being a lateral sacral artery. The patient was treated surgically with curative intent. The FTL and tethered cord that had been identified by imaging were treated in the same procedure. Postoperative digital subtraction angiography showed absence of the abnormal vessels. The patient was discharged home on the 19th postoperative day.

LESSONS

When considering treatment, it is important to determine whether symptoms are attributable mainly to FTL, tethered cord, or FTAVF. One-stage treatment is useful because it eliminates both the FTAVF and the factors that led to its development.

Open access

Pituitary macroadenoma causing vision loss in Wyburn-Mason syndrome: illustrative case

Nicholas F. Hug, David A. Purger, Heather E. Moss, and Robert L. Dodd

BACKGROUND

Wyburn-Mason syndrome (WMS) is a neurocutaneous disorder consisting of vascular malformations of the brain, eye, and skin. These include characteristically high-flow intracranial and intraorbital arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) that present commonly with visual deterioration, headache, and hemiplegia. Complete removal of these lesions is challenging. Most patients are followed closely, and intervention occurs only in the setting of worsening symptoms secondary to AVM growth or hemorrhage. Here the authors present the first known case of a patient with WMS and a pituitary macroadenoma.

OBSERVATIONS

A 62-year-old man with a 30-year history of WMS with right basal ganglia and orbital AVMs and right eye blindness presented for new-onset left-sided vision loss. A pituitary adenoma was identified compressing the optic chiasm and left optic nerve. Magnetic resonance imaging and digital subtraction angiography studies were obtained for surgical planning, and the patient underwent an endoscopic transnasal transsphenoidal resection, with significant postoperative vision improvement.

LESSONS

Given the variable presentation and poor characterization of this rare syndrome, patients with WMS presenting with new symptoms must undergo evaluation for growth and hemorrhage of known AVMs, as well as new lesions. Further, in patients undergoing intracranial surgery, extensive preoperative imaging and planning are crucial for safe and successful procedures.

Open access

Tricuspid regurgitation and left ventricular eccentricity as a measure of heart failure in the newborn patient with a vein of Galen malformation: illustrative case

Jeremy A. Yarden, Lily I. Hauck, Kamlesh V. Athavale, Andrew W. McCrary, M. Jay Campbell, and Erik F. Hauck

BACKGROUND

Successful management of a vein of Galen malformation (VoGM) in the newborn patient requires a highly coordinated team approach involving neonatologists, pediatric cardiologists, pediatric neurologists, neurosurgeons, and interventionalists. Indication and timing of catheter intervention are topics of ongoing debate.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors highlighted two key echocardiographic markers believed to be practical indicators regarding the need for urgent catheter embolization in neonates with a VoGM. The first and preferred parameter was the tricuspid valve regurgitation (TR) gradient, an estimate of pulmonary artery hypertension. If the TR gradient exceeds systolic blood pressure (suprasystemic pulmonary hypertension [PH], i.e., >60 mm Hg), urgent intervention should be considered in eligible newborns. The second parameter was the left ventricular end-systolic eccentricity index (EI), a newly emerging echocardiographic marker and indirect correlate of PH. As an alternative to the TR gradient, an increased eccentricity index (>1.6) suggests severe right heart compromise, requiring emergency catheter embolization of the malformation. Postoperatively, the progressive reduction of both the TR gradient and the EI correlated with recovery.

LESSONS

In eligible newborns, urgent embolization of a VoGM is recommended in the presence of suprasystemic TR gradients and/or increased EI >1.6.

Open access

Spontaneous regression of a vein of Galen aneurysmal malformation in a pediatric patient: illustrative case

Kevin K. Kumar, Linden E. Fornoff, Robert L. Dodd, Michael P. Marks, and David S. Hong

BACKGROUND

Vein of Galen aneurysmal malformations (VGAMs) are rare congenital intracranial vascular lesions that represent 30% of all pediatric vascular anomalies. These lesions are associated with severe manifestations, including congestive heart failure, hydrocephalus, and spontaneous hemorrhage. The mainstay of management is medical stabilization followed by endovascular embolization of the lesion. Although VGAM was first reported in 1937, there are few published cases demonstrating spontaneous regression of the lesion.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors report the case of a 31-month-old female who presented with an incidentally found VGAM. After initial evaluation, including magnetic resonance imaging and angiography, the patient was lost to follow-up. Upon her return to the clinic at age 12 years, the previously identified VGAM was absent, indicative of involution of the lesion. The patient remained asymptomatic and met appropriate developmental milestones during this interval.

LESSONS

This report adds a rare case of the spontaneous resolution of VGAM to the literature. This case may suggest the presence of VGAMs that are asymptomatic, undetected, and regress within the pediatric population. Future studies may benefit from identifying imaging and angiographic findings predictive of spontaneous regression. There may be a role for conservative management in particular cases of asymptomatic and medically stable children with VGAMs.