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Gregory Glauser, Tracy M. Flanders and Omar Choudhri

This video is a presentation of technical tenets for the microsurgical clipping of a tentorial dural arteriovenous fistula presenting with thalamic venous hypertension. These cases are easily misdiagnosed and often supplied by the tentorial artery of Davidoff and Schecter. The cases shown in the video uniquely illustrate a supracerebellar infratentorial approach to identify and clip an arterialized tentorial vein utilizing intraoperative Doppler and fluorescein, with navigation and an intraoperative cerebral angiogram in a hybrid neuroangiography operative suite. Both patients were found to have thalamic edema on preoperative imaging, which significantly improved postoperatively.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/HmUO6Ye53QI.

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Robert T. Wicks, Xiaochun Zhao, Douglas A. Hardesty, Brandon D. Liebelt and Peter Nakaji

Ethmoidal dural arteriovenous fistulas (DAVFs) have a near-universal association with cortical venous drainage and a malignant clinical course. Endovascular treatment options are often limited due to the high frequency of ophthalmic artery ethmoidal supply. A 64-year-old gentleman presented with syncope and was found to have a right ethmoidal DAVF. Rather than the traditional bicoronal craniotomy, an endoscope-assisted mini-pterional approach for clip ligation is demonstrated. The mini-pterional craniotomy allows a minimally invasive approach to ethmoidal DAVF via a lateral trajectory. The endoscope can help achieve full visualization in the narrow corridor.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/ZroXp-T35DI.

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Andrew Kai-Hong Chan, Winward Choy, Catherine A. Miller, Leslie C. Robinson and Praveen V. Mummaneni

Minimally invasive transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (MI-TLIF) is associated with improved patient-reported outcomes in well-selected patients. Recently, some neurosurgeons have aimed to further improve outcomes by utilizing multimodal methods to avoid the use of general anesthesia. Here, the authors report on the use of a novel awake technique for MI-TLIF in two patients. They describe the successful use of liposomal bupivacaine in combination with a spinal anesthetic to allow for operative analgesia.

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Lorenzo Rinaldo, Waleed Brinjikji and Leonardo Rangel-Castilla

An 80-year-old female presented with a long history of severe pulsatile tinnitus, vertigo, and decreased hearing. She was found to have a large right-sided tentorial arteriovenous fistula (AVF) with enlarged deep draining veins, including the vein of Rosenthal. The patient underwent Onyx embolization of the fistula via a combined transarterial and transvenous approach resulting in complete obliteration of the fistula. Her symptoms improved immediately after the procedure and at 6-months’ follow-up she was clinically asymptomatic with no evidence of residual fistula on neuroimaging. Transvenous embolization of AVF is at times necessary when transarterial access is not possible.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/uOMHY7eaOoQ.

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Ellen M. Soffin, Douglas S. Wetmore, James D. Beckman, Evan D. Sheha, Avani S. Vaishnav, Todd J. Albert, Catherine H. Gang and Sheeraz A. Qureshi

OBJECTIVE

Enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) and multimodal analgesia are established care models that minimize perioperative opioid consumption and promote positive outcomes after spine surgery. Opioid-free anesthesia (OFA) is an emerging technique that may achieve similar goals. The purpose of this study was to evaluate an OFA regimen within an ERAS pathway for lumbar decompressive surgery and to compare perioperative opioid requirements in a matched cohort of patients managed with traditional opioid-containing anesthesia (OCA).

METHODS

The authors performed a retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data. They included 36 patients who underwent lumbar decompression under their ERAS pathway for spinal decompression between February and August 2018. Eighteen patients who received OFA were matched in a 1:1 ratio to a cohort managed with a traditional OCA regimen. The primary outcome was total perioperative opioid consumption. Postoperative pain scores (measured using the numerical rating scale [NRS]), opioid consumption (total morphine equivalents), and length of stay (time to readiness for discharge) were compared in the postanesthesia care unit (PACU). The authors also assessed compliance with ERAS process measures and compared compliance during 3 phases of care: pre-, intra-, and postoperative.

RESULTS

There was a significant reduction in total perioperative opioid consumption in patients who received OFA (2.43 ± 0.86 oral morphine equivalents [OMEs]; mean ± SEM), compared to patients who received OCA (38.125 ± 6.11 OMEs). There were no significant differences in worst postoperative pain scores (NRS scores 2.55 ± 0.70 vs 2.58 ± 0.73) or opioid consumption (5.28 ± 1.7 vs 4.86 ± 1.5 OMEs) in the PACU between OFA and OCA groups, respectively. There was a clinically significant decrease in time to readiness for discharge from the PACU associated with OFA (37 minutes), although this was not statistically significantly different. The authors found high overall compliance with ERAS process measures (91.4%) but variation in compliance according to phase of care. The highest compliance occurred during the preoperative phase (94.71% ± 2.88%), and the lowest compliance occurred during the postoperative phase of care (85.4% ± 5.7%).

CONCLUSIONS

OFA within an ERAS pathway for lumbar spinal decompression represents an opportunity to minimize perioperative opioid exposure without adversely affecting pain control or recovery. This study reveals opportunities for patient and provider education to reinforce ERAS and highlights the postoperative phase of care as a time when resources should be focused to increase ERAS adherence.

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Recent advances in the neurosurgical treatment of pediatric epilepsy

JNSPG 75th Anniversary Invited Review Article

Jarod L. Roland and Matthew D. Smyth

The field of epilepsy surgery has seen tremendous growth in recent years. Innovative new devices have driven much of this growth, but some has been driven by revisions of existing products. Devices have also helped to rejuvenate existing procedures, as in the case of robotic assistance for electrode placement for stereo-electroencephalography, and these devices have brought significant attention along with their introduction. Other devices, such as responsive neurostimulators or laser interstitial thermal therapy systems, have introduced novel treatment modalities and broadened the surgical indications. Collectively, these advances are rapidly changing much of the landscape in the world of pediatric neurosurgery for medically refractory epilepsy. The foundations for indications for neurosurgical intervention are well supported in strong research data, which has also been expanded in recent years. In this article, the authors review advances in the neurosurgical treatment of pediatric epilepsy, beginning with trials that have repeatedly demonstrated the value of neurosurgical procedures for medically refractory epilepsy and following with several recent advances that are largely focused on less-invasive intervention.

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G. Damian Brusko, John Paul G. Kolcun, Julie A. Heger, Allan D. Levi, Glen R. Manzano, Karthik Madhavan, Timur Urakov, Richard H. Epstein and Michael Y. Wang

OBJECTIVE

Lumbar fusion is typically associated with high degrees of pain and immobility. The implementation of an enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) approach has been successful in speeding the recovery after other surgical procedures. In this paper, the authors examined the results of early implementation of ERAS for lumbar fusion.

METHODS

Beginning in March 2018 at the authors’ institution, all patients undergoing posterior, 1- to 3-level lumbar fusion surgery by any of 3 spine surgeons received an intraoperative injection of liposomal bupivacaine, immediate single postoperative infusion of 1-g intravenous acetaminophen, and daily postoperative visits from the authors’ multidisciplinary ERAS care team. Non–English- or non–Spanish-speaking patients and those undergoing nonelective or staged procedures were excluded. Reviews of medical records were conducted for the ERAS cohort of 57 patients and a comparison group of 40 patients who underwent the same procedures during the 6 months before implementation.

RESULTS

Groups did not differ significantly with regard to sex, age, or BMI (all p > 0.05). Length of stay was significantly shorter in the ERAS cohort than in the control cohort (2.9 days vs 3.8 days; p = 0.01). Patients in the ERAS group consumed significantly less oxycodone-acetaminophen than the controls on postoperative day (POD) 0 (408.0 mg vs 1094.7 mg; p = 0.0004), POD 1 (1320.0 mg vs 1708.4 mg; p = 0.04), and POD 3 (1500.1 mg vs 2105.4 mg; p = 0.03). Postoperative pain scores recorded by the physical therapy and occupational therapy teams and nursing staff each day were lower in the ERAS cohort than in controls, with POD 1 achieving significance (4.2 vs 6.0; p = 0.006). The total amount of meperidine (8.8 mg vs 44.7 mg; p = 0.003) consumed was also significantly decreased in the ERAS group, as was ondansetron (2.8 mg vs 6.0 mg; p = 0.02). Distance ambulated on each POD was farther in the ERAS cohort, with ambulation on POD 1 (109.4 ft vs 41.4 ft; p = 0.002) achieving significance.

CONCLUSIONS

In this very initial implementation of the first phase of an ERAS program for short-segment lumbar fusion, the authors were able to demonstrate substantial positive effects on the early recovery process. Importantly, these effects were not surgeon-specific and could be generalized across surgeons with disparate technical predilections. The authors plan additional iterations to their ERAS protocols for continued quality improvements.

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Ivo Peto, Hussam Abou-Al-Shaar and Amir R. Dehdashti

Posterior fossa dural arteriovenous fistulas (dAVFs) are rare vascular malformations. They carry a significant risk of hemorrhage if associated with cortical venous reflux. A 70-year-old man presented with right-sided medullary hemorrhage with pronounced Wallenberg syndrome. Angiography demonstrated right jugular foramen dAVF with direct brainstem venous reflux (Cognard IV). It was fed from multiple branches of the external carotid artery and the vertebral artery, and draining into the ascending pontomesencephalic vein. Primary two-stage transarterial embolization was performed with near-total occlusion of the fistula to prevent it from rebleeding in the acute phase. Because of the patient’s significant neurological deficit, the surgery was deferred to later and if the DAVF showed further progression. Follow-up angiography 8 months later demonstrated obvious recurrence and progression of the fistula from adjacent feeders. In the meantime, the patient had a remarkable recovery from the Wallenberg symptoms. To achieve complete occlusion of the fistula, a right far lateral approach was chosen with complete disconnection of the fistula. Postoperative angiography confirmed complete occlusion of the fistula, and the patient remained intact from the procedure.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/DJvpa8G4olc.

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Thomas J. Buell, Davis G. Taylor, Ching-Jen Chen, Lauren K. Dunn, Jeffrey P. Mullin, Marcus D. Mazur, Chun-Po Yen, Mark E. Shaffrey, Christopher I. Shaffrey, Justin S. Smith and Bhiken I. Naik

OBJECTIVE

Significant blood loss and coagulopathy are often encountered during adult spinal deformity (ASD) surgery, and the optimal intraoperative transfusion algorithm is debatable. Rotational thromboelastometry (ROTEM), a functional viscoelastometric method for real-time hemostasis testing, may allow early identification of coagulopathy and improve transfusion practices. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of ROTEM-guided blood product management on perioperative blood loss and transfusion requirements in ASD patients undergoing correction with pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO).

METHODS

The authors retrospectively reviewed patients with ASD who underwent single-level lumbar PSO at the University of Virginia Health System. All patients who received ROTEM-guided blood product transfusion between 2015 and 2017 were matched in a 1:1 ratio to a historical cohort treated using conventional laboratory testing (control group). Co-primary outcomes were intraoperative estimated blood loss (EBL) and total blood product transfusion volume. Secondary outcomes were perioperative transfusion requirements and postoperative subfascial drain output.

RESULTS

The matched groups (ROTEM and control) comprised 17 patients each. Comparison of matched group baseline characteristics demonstrated differences in female sex and total intraoperative dose of intravenous tranexamic acid (TXA). Although EBL was comparable between ROTEM versus control (3200.00 ± 2106.24 ml vs 3874.12 ± 2224.22 ml, p = 0.36), there was a small to medium effect size (Cohen’s d = 0.31) on EBL reduction with ROTEM. The ROTEM group had less total blood product transfusion volume (1624.18 ± 1774.79 ml vs 2810.88 ± 1847.46 ml, p = 0.02), and the effect size was medium to large (Cohen’s d = 0.66). This difference was no longer significant after adjusting for TXA (β = −0.18, 95% confidence interval [CI] −1995.78 to 671.64, p = 0.32). More cryoprecipitate and less fresh frozen plasma (FFP) were transfused in the ROTEM group patients (cryoprecipitate units: 1.24 ± 1.20 vs 0.53 ± 1.01, p = 0.03; FFP volume: 119.76 ± 230.82 ml vs 673.06 ± 627.08 ml, p < 0.01), and this remained significant after adjusting for TXA (cryoprecipitate units: β = 0.39, 95% CI 0.05 to 1.73, p = 0.04; FFP volume: β = −0.41, 95% CI −772.55 to −76.30, p = 0.02). Drain output was lower in the ROTEM group and remained significant after adjusting for TXA.

CONCLUSIONS

For ASD patients treated using lumbar PSO, more cryoprecipitate and less FFP were transfused in the ROTEM group compared to the control group. These preliminary findings suggest ROTEM-guided therapy may allow early identification of hypofibrinogenemia, and aggressive management of this may reduce blood loss and total blood product transfusion volume. Additional prospective studies of larger cohorts are warranted to identify the appropriate subset of ASD patients who may benefit from intraoperative ROTEM analysis.

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Silvia Gesheva, William T. Couldwell, Vance Mortimer, Philipp Taussky and Ramesh Grandhi

Dural arteriovenous fistulae (dAVFs) are vascular anomalies formed by abnormal connections between branches of dural arteries and dural veins or dural venous sinus(es). These pathologic shunts constitute 10%–15% of all intracranial arteriovenous malformations. The hallmark of malignant dAVFs is the presence of cortical venous drainage, a finding that increases the likelihood of nonhemorrhagic neurologic deficit, intracranial hemorrhage, and mortality if left unaddressed. Endovascular approaches have become the primary modality for the treatment of dAVFs. The authors present a case of staged endovascular transarterial embolization of a malignant dAVF running parallel to the left transverse sinus in a patient with headaches and pulsatile tinnitus. The fistula was completely treated using Onyx and n-butyl cyanoacrylate.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/GSAto_wlC3I.