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  • By Author: Germano, Isabelle M. x
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Isabelle M. Germano, Richard L. Davis, Charles B. Wilson and Grant B. Hieshima

✓ Embolization with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) is an accepted method of rendering complex arteriovenous malformations (AVM's) more amenable to surgery, but its effects on human vascular tissues have not been adequately documented. The authors reviewed the histopathology of 66 intracranial AVM's resected 1 to 76 days after embolization with PVA. The mean age of the patients was 36 years, and their AVM's were located in the cerebral hemispheres (92%), the cerebellum (6%), or the corpus callosum (2%). In 79% of cases, at least one vessel contained PVA particles; in most cases, the vessel was filled with sharp, angular PVA particles in a serpiginous pattern. Polyvinyl alcohol particles indented the endothelium in 69% of cases but were rarely found subendothelially. Clotted blood and fibroblasts were present among the particles, and abundant intraluminal mononuclear and polymorphonuclear inflammatory cells were found in all vessels containing PVA particles. Foreign-body giant cells appeared 2 to 14 days after embolization in the majority of cases. Patchy mural angionecrosis and necrotizing vasculitis were found in 39% of the cases. Recanalized lumina were seen in 18% of PVA-embolized vessels. Foreign materials resembling cotton fibers and other particulate substances, which were probably contaminants of the contrast solution or the embolic material, were found in 65% of the cases. These findings suggest a specific chain of events in the interaction between PVA and vessel wall components and may explain some important sequelae of embolization therapy.

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Isabelle M. Germano, Masami Ito, Kyung G. Cho, Takao Hoshino, Richard L. Davis and Charles B. Wilson

✓ One hundred fifty-two intracranial gliomas of various types were reviewed in order to correlate the histopathological features with the proliferative potential of each tumor as reflected by the bromodeoxyuridine (BUdR) labeling index (LI). Patients undergoing surgical removal of gliomas were given a 30-minute intravenous infusion of BUdR (150 to 200 mg/sq m) to label S-phase tumor cells. The tumor specimens were stained immunohistochemically for BUdR and processed for routine histopathological diagnosis. The BUdR LI was calculated as the percentage of labeled cells among cells analyzed. Twenty-seven histological features in three categories (degenerative, vascular, and cellular changes) were considered. A significantly higher BUdR LI (p < 0.05) was found in tumors with necrosis than in those without this feature; tumors with both coagulative and liquefactive necrosis had the highest BUdR LI (p < 0.05). Increased vascularity was also associated with a higher BUdR LI (p < 0.05). Although tumors with abnormal mitotic figures had a significantly higher BUdR LI than those without, the number of mitoses did not correlate with a higher BUdR LI. These results suggest that the number of mitoses is not a good indicator of tumor growth rate. Necrosis and increased vascularity should be heavily weighted in predicting the proliferative potential of individual gliomas.