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Open access

Thoracic spinal cord injury after surgical removal of a ruptured cerebellar arteriovenous malformation in a patient in the Concorde position: illustrative case

Kohei Ishikawa, Hideki Endo, Yasufumi Ohtake, Toshiichi Watanabe, and Hirohiko Nakamura

BACKGROUND

Thoracic spinal cord injury after posterior cranial fossa surgery in younger patients is a rare complication. There have been reports of this complication in tumor and spine fields but not in vascular surgery.

OBSERVATIONS

A 22-year-old-man experienced cerebellar arteriovenous malformation rupture, and the malformation was surgically removed with the man in the Concorde position. After surgery, the man had severe paraplegia, and a thoracic spinal cord injury was diagnosed.

LESSONS

In younger patients, cervical hyperflexion in the Concorde position can cause thoracic spinal cord injury even in surgery for cerebrovascular disease.

Open access

Can we build better? Challenges with geospatial and financial accessibility in the Caribbean. Illustrative case

Ellianne J dos Santos Rubio, Chrystal Calderon, Annegien Boeykens, and Kee B Park

BACKGROUND

Within the Caribbean, Curaçao provides a neurosurgical hub to other Dutch Caribbean islands. At times, the inefficiency of neurosurgical referrals leads to unsatisfactory patient outcomes in true emergency cases.

OBSERVATIONS

This article reports an illustrative case of a patient in need of emergency neurosurgical care, who was referred to a tertiary health institution in Curaçao. This case highlights the challenges of timely neurosurgical referrals within the Dutch Caribbean.

LESSONS

Highlighting this case may provide a foundation for further discussions that may improve neurosurgical care and access. Limiting long-distance surgical referrals in the acute care setting will aid in saving lives.

Open access

Late-developing posttraumatic dural arteriovenous fistula of the vertebral artery: illustrative case

Hanna E Schenck, Thomas B Fodor, Bart A. J. M Wagemans, and Roel H. L Haeren

BACKGROUND

A dural arteriovenous fistula (dAVF) involving the vertebral artery (VA) is a rare vascular pathology that can result from damage to the VA, most frequently following cervical spine trauma. In most traumatic cases, the dAVF develops and manifests shortly after trauma.

OBSERVATIONS

A patient was admitted after a fall from the stairs causing neck pain. Computed tomography of the cervical spine revealed a Hangman’s fracture, and angiography showed a left VA dissection. The patient was treated with a cervical brace and clopidogrel. Three weeks after trauma, the patient was admitted because of bilateral leg ataxia, dizziness, and neck pain. Repeat imaging revealed increased displacement of the cervical fracture and a dAVF from the left VA with retrograde filling of the dAVF from the right VA. Embolization of the dAVF using coils proximally and distally to the dAVF was performed prior to placing a halo brace. At 6 months, all symptoms had disappeared and union of the cervical spine fracture had occurred.

LESSONS

This case report emphasizes the need for follow-up angiography after traumatic VA injury resulting from cervical spine fracture and underlines important treatment considerations for successful obliteration of a dAVF of the VA.

Open access

Traumatic middle meningeal arteriovenous fistula presenting with long delayed-onset facial nerve palsy without temporal bone fracture: illustrative case

Shigeki Takada, Koki Mitani, Tomonori Ichikawa, Nobutake Sadamasa, and Waro Taki

BACKGROUND

Traumatic facial nerve palsy (FNP) without temporal bone fracture (TBF) has a delayed onset in some cases; however, long delayed-onset FNP in this setting has not been reported. The middle meningeal vein (MMV) is one of the venous drainage routes from the facial nerve. Herein, the authors describe a rare case of traumatic middle meningeal arteriovenous fistula (MMAVF) presenting with the long delayed-onset FNP without TBF.

OBSERVATIONS

A 42-year-old man with pulsatile tinnitus and left FNP was admitted to our hospital 4 weeks after head trauma without TBF. Cerebral angiography revealed an MMAVF between the middle meningeal artery and the MMV on the left side. Seven days after admission, the FNP showed slight improvement, and preoperative angiography revealed decreased shunt flow of the MMAVF. Transarterial coil embolization was successfully performed. Postoperative angiography showed no residual fistula. Two weeks after the procedure, there was complete resolution of the FNP. This clinical course was correlated with the angiographic findings, suggesting that the long delayed-onset FNP was caused by the traumatic MMAVF without TBF.

LESSONS

In patients presenting with long delayed-onset FNP after head trauma without TBF, the vascular lesion must be evaluated to exclude MMAVF.

Open access

Enlarging traumatic superficial temporal artery pseudoaneurysm from a lacrosse ball injury: illustrative case

Kristina F. Terrani, Anthony M. Avellino, and M. Michael Bercu

BACKGROUND

The development of a mobile, growing, pulsatile mass after blunt head trauma to the forehead area, resulting in a superficial temporal artery pseudoaneurysm, is a very rare outcome. Most pseudoaneurysms are diagnosed with ultrasound, computed tomography (CT), and/or magnetic resonance imaging and treated via resection or, occasionally, embolization.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors describe a case of a young male lacrosse player who presented with a bulging, partially pulsatile mass in the right forehead region 2 months after trauma from a high-velocity ball striking his head while helmeted. The authors reviewed 12 patients in the literature and describe each patient’s epidemiological features, nature of the trauma, and onset of the lesion after the trauma, as well as the diagnostic methods and treatments for each case.

LESSONS

Overall, CT and ultrasound appear to be the easiest and most used methods of diagnosis, and resection under general anesthesia is the most common treatment method.

Open access

Tentorial dural arteriovenous fistula with perimedullary venous drainage–associated cervical myelopathy: illustrative case

Sergi Cobos Codina, Luis Miguel Bernal García, José Antonio Rodríguez Sánchez, Tania Gavilán Iglesias, and Luis Fernández de Alarcón

BACKGROUND

Tentorial dural arteriovenous fistulas (DAVFs) with perimedullary venous drainage causing cervical myelopathy are very uncommon conditions with an extremely aggressive behavior. When the characteristic radiological clues are missing, the unspecific clinical picture may cause delay and make the diagnosis challenging.

OBSERVATIONS

Here the authors report a case of a 58-year-old man who developed progressive spastic tetraparesis and dyspnea with an extensive mild enhancing cervical cord lesion initially oriented as a neurosyphilis-associated transverse myelitis. Acute worsening after steroid administration redirected the diagnosis, and a tentorial Cognard type V DAVF was elicited. The microsurgical disconnection process is described, and previously documented cases in the literature are reviewed.

LESSONS

If a DAVF is highly suspected, it is important to consider the possibility of its intracranial origin, and spinal as well as cerebral arteriography must be performed.

Open access

Traumatic aneurysm at the superior cerebellar artery: illustrative case

Mun-Chun Yeap, Meng-Wu Chung, and Chun-Ting Chen

BACKGROUND

Traumatic aneurysms at the superior cerebellar arteries after head injury are extremely rare and may be overlooked. Rupture of these aneurysms can cause fatal intracranial hemorrhages; thus, early identification of the entity helps prevent detrimental outcomes.

OBSERVATIONS

A patient suffered from sudden severe headache and decreased consciousness level several weeks after a blunt head injury. He received surgery to remove a progressive enlarging subdural hematoma. The diagnosis of a traumatic aneurysm at the superior cerebellar artery was delayed, made only after a recurrent subdural hemorrhage occurred. He received another surgery to obliterate the aneurysm.

LESSONS

The patient could have been treated earlier if traumatic aneurysm had been suspected in the beginning. In addition to the case, the authors also reviewed the literature to clarify the pathophysiology, clinical presentation, diagnosis, and management of the disease.

Open access

Rapid resolution of a traumatic venous epidural hematoma in a 3-year-old child: illustrative case

Florian Wilhelmy, Tim Wende, Johannes Kasper, Maxime Ablefoni, Lena Marie Bode, Jürgen Meixensberger, and Ulf Nestler

BACKGROUND

Posterior fossa epidural hematoma rarely occurs in children after traumatic head injury. There is ongoing discussion about appropriate treatment, yet the radiological features regarding the time to resorption of the hematoma or required follow-up imaging are rarely discussed.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors presented the case of a 3-year-old child who was under clinical observation and receiving analgetic and antiemetic treatment in whom near-complete hematoma resorption was shown by magnetic resonance imaging as soon as 60 hours after diagnosis. The child was neurologically stable at all times and showed no deficit after observational treatment. Hematoma resorption was much faster than expected. The authors discussed hematoma drainage via the sigmoid sinus.

LESSONS

Epidural hematomas in children can be treated conservatively and are resorbed in a timely manner.

Open access

Traumatic rupture of thoracic epidural capillary hemangioma resulting in acute neurologic deficit: illustrative case

Reilly L. Kidwell, Lauren E. Stone, Vanessa Goodwill, and Joseph D. Ciacci

BACKGROUND

Thoracic epidural capillary hemangioma is exceedingly rare, with only a few reported cases. The typical presentation usually includes chronic, progressive symptoms of spinal cord compression in middle-aged adults. To the authors’ knowledge, this case is the first report in the literature of acute traumatic capillary hemangioma rupture.

OBSERVATIONS

A 22-year-old male presented with worsening lower extremity weakness and paresthesias after a fall onto his spine. Imaging showed no evidence of spinal fracture but revealed an expanding hematoma over 24 hours. Removal of the lesion demonstrated a ruptured capillary hemangioma.

LESSONS

This unique case highlights a rare occurrence of traumatic rupture of a previously unknown asymptomatic thoracic capillary hemangioma in a young adult.

Open access

First reported use of real-time intraoperative computed tomography angiography image registration using the Machine-vision Image Guided Surgery system: illustrative case

Harsh Wadhwa, Karen Malacon, Zachary A. Medress, Christopher Leung, Matthew Sklar, and Corinna C. Zygourakis

BACKGROUND

Vertebral artery injury is a devastating potential complication of C1–2 posterior fusion. Intraoperative navigation can reduce the risk of neurovascular complications and improve screw placement accuracy. However, the use of intraoperative computed tomography (CT) increases radiation exposure and operative time, and it is unable to image vascular structures. The Machine-vision Image Guided Surgery (MvIGS) system uses optical topographic imaging and machine vision software to rapidly register using preoperative imaging. The authors presented the first report of intraoperative navigation with MvIGS registered using a preoperative CT angiogram (CTA) during C1–2 posterior fusion.

OBSERVATIONS

MvIGS can register in seconds, minimizing operative time with no additional radiation exposure. Furthermore, surgeons can better adjust for abnormal vertebral artery anatomy and increase procedure safety.

LESSONS

CTA-guided navigation generated a three-dimensional reconstruction of cervical spine anatomy that assisted surgeons during the procedure. Although further study is needed, the use of intraoperative MvIGS may reduce the risk of vertebral artery injury during C1–2 posterior fusion.