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G. Rene Alvarez Berastegui, Shaan M. Raza, Vijay K. Anand, and Theodore H. Schwartz

Visual deterioration after dopamine-agonist treatment of prolactinomas associated with empty sella syndrome and secondary optic apparatus traction is a rare event. Chiasmapexy has been described as a viable treatment option, although few cases exist in the literature. Here, a novel endonasal endoscopic approach to chiasmapexy is described and its efficacy is demonstrated in a case report.

A 55-year-old female patient with a history of a giant prolactinoma and 14 years of treatment using dopaminergic agonist therapy presented to our institution with a 1-month history of visual changes. Neuroophthalmological examination confirmed severe bitemporal field defects, and MRI revealed a large empty sella with downward optic chiasmal herniation. Endoscopic endonasal chiasmapexy was performed by elevating the chiasm with lumbar drainage and filling the clival and sellar defect with an extradural liquid (HydroSet; a cranioplasty bone cement), and a piece of AlloDerm was used to cover and cushion the chiasm. Postoperative imaging demonstrated successful anatomical elevation of the optic apparatus, and the patient showed functional improvement in the visual field at 3 months postoperatively.

Although rare, massive empty sellar and chiasmal descent from macroadenoma treatment can result in progressive visual loss. Here, a novel technique of endonasal endoscopic extradural cranioplasty aided by lumbar drainage is reported, which appears to be an effective technique for stabilizing and possibly reversing anatomical and visual deterioration.

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Joseph A. Carnevale, Christopher S. Babu, Jacob L. Goldberg, Reginald Fong, and Theodore H. Schwartz

OBJECTIVE

Visual deterioration after endoscopic endonasal transsphenoidal surgery (EETS) for sellar and parasellar masses is a rare but serious complication caused by either compressive or ischemic mechanisms. Timely diagnosis and intervention may restore vision if instituted appropriately. The associated risk factors and their relation to the success of intervention are not well understood.

METHODS

The authors examined a series of 1200 consecutive EETS cases performed by the senior author at Weill Cornell/NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital from 2010 to 2020. Cases with postoperative visual deterioration were identified. Pre- and postoperative clinical data, mechanism of visual decline, latency to intervention, and long-term visual outcome were retrospectively collected and analyzed with appropriate statistical methods.

RESULTS

Twenty-one patients (1.75%) complained of early postoperative visual deterioration. The most common pathology associated with postoperative visual loss was craniopharyngioma (7.69%), followed by meningioma (5.43%) and then pituitary adenoma (1.94%). Timely intervention restored vision in 81% of patients for a 0.33% rate of permanent visual deterioration. Average time to visual deterioration was 28.8 hours, and over 70% of patients experienced vision loss within the first 13 hours. Compressive etiology (n = 11), consisting of either hematoma (n = 8) or graft displacement (n = 3), occurred 7.3 hours and 70.3 hours after surgery, respectively, and was more common in adenomas. Acute postoperative visual deterioration was more common in firm closures (4.78%) compared with soft closures (1.03%; p = 0.0006). Ischemic etiology (n = 10) occurred 10.3 hours after surgery and was more common with craniopharyngiomas and meningiomas (p = 0.08). Sixteen patients (76.2%) underwent early reoperation to explore and decompress the optic apparatus. Vision was restored to baseline after reoperation in all 11 compressive cases, whereas 6/10 ischemic cases improved with supplemental oxygen and hypervolemic hypertensive therapy (p = 0.02). Fluid expansion from 8 to 16 hours (p = 0.034) and systolic blood pressure elevation from 32 to 48 hours (p = 0.05) after surgery were significantly higher in those ischemic patients who recovered some vision compared with those with persistent visual deficits.

CONCLUSIONS

Visual deterioration after EETS is a rare event but can be effectively treated if acted upon appropriately and in a timely fashion. Compressive etiology is reversible with early reoperation. Ischemic etiology can be successfully treated in roughly half of cases with supplemental oxygen and hypertensive hypervolemic therapy but may result in permanent visual deterioration if not instituted appropriately or if delayed with unnecessary exploratory surgery.

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Alhusain Nagm, Toshihiro Ogiwara, Takeo Goto, Kazuhiro Hongo, and Kenji Ohata

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Prajwal Rajappa, Konstantinos Margetis, Dimitri Sigounas, Vijay Anand, Theodore H. Schwartz, and Jeffrey P. Greenfield

The authors report a case of a recurrent pediatric ventral pontine ependymoma that they resected through an endonasal endoscopic transclival approach. Regarding the options for a surgical approach to ventral pontine tumors, traditional far-lateral approaches are associated with considerable morbidity due to the required muscle mobilization, brain retraction, and in-line obstruction of cranial nerves before reaching the target. The endoscopic endonasal transclival approach was made appealing by eliminating all of these concerns. The patient's fully pneumatized sphenoid sinus, laterally displaced basilar artery, and the direct ventral location of the bulky disease all further supported this unconventional choice of surgical corridor to achieve a palliative brainstem decompression of an incurable recurrence.

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Malte Ottenhausen, Kavelin Rumalla, Iyan Younus, Shlomo Minkowitz, Apostolos John Tsiouris, and Theodore H. Schwartz

OBJECTIVE

Resection of supratentorial meningiomas is generally considered a low-risk procedure, but tumors involving the rolandic cortex present a unique challenge. The rate of motor function deterioration associated with resecting such tumors is not well described in the literature. Thus, the authors sought to report the rates and predictors of postoperative motor deficit following the resection of rolandic meningiomas to assist with patient counseling and surgical decision-making.

METHODS

An institution’s pathology database was screened for meningiomas removed between 2000 and 2017, and patients with neuroradiological evidence of rolandic involvement were identified. Parameters screened as potential predictors included patient age, sex, preoperative motor severity, tumor location, tumor origin (falx vs convexity), histological grade, FLAIR signal (T2-weighted MRI), venous involvement (T1-weighted MRI with contrast), intratumoral hemorrhage, embolization, and degree of resection (Simpson grade). Variables of interest included preoperative weakness and postoperative motor decline (novel or worsened permanent deficit). The SPSS univariate and bivariate analysis functions were used, and statistical significance was determined with alpha < 0.05.

RESULTS

In 89 patients who had undergone resection of convexity (80.9%) or parasagittal (19.1%) rolandic meningiomas, a postoperative motor decline occurred in 24.7%. Of 53 patients (59.6%) with preoperative motor deficits, 60.3% improved, 13.2% were unchanged, and 26.4% worsened following surgery. Among the 36 patients without preoperative deficits, 22.2% developed new weakness. Predictors of preoperative motor deficit included tumor size (41.6 vs 33.2 cm3, p = 0.040) and presence of FLAIR signal (69.8% vs 50.0%, p = 0.046). Predictors of postoperative motor decline were preoperative motor deficit (47.2% vs 22.2%, p = 0.017), minor (compared with severe) preoperative weakness (25.6% vs 21.4%, p < 0.001), and preoperative embolization (54.5% vs 20.5%, p = 0.014). Factors that trended toward significance included parafalcine tumor origin (41.2% vs 20.8% convexity, p = 0.08), significant venous involvement (44.4% vs 23.5% none, p = 0.09), and Simpson grade II+ (34.2% vs 17.6% grade I, p = 0.07).

CONCLUSIONS

Resection of rolandic area meningiomas carries a high rate of postoperative morbidity and deserves special preoperative planning. Large tumor size, peritumoral edema, preoperative embolization, parafalcine origin, and venous involvement may further increase the risk. Alternative surgical strategies, such as aggressive internal debulking, may prevent motor decline in a subset of high-risk patients.

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Mario Francesco Fraioli and Laura Moschettoni

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Jonathan P. S. Knisely, Rohan Ramakrishna, and Theodore H. Schwartz

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Richard D. Murray, Rachel Friedlander, Samuel Hanz, Harminder Singh, Vijay K. Anand, and Theodore H. Schwartz

OBJECTIVE

The anterior skull base is a common site for the spontaneous development of meningoceles, encephaloceles, and meningoencephaloceles that can lead to cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fistula formation, particularly in association with idiopathic intracranial hypertension. In some circumstances the lesions are difficult to localize. Whether all sites in the anterior skull base are equally prone to fistula formation or whether they are distributed randomly throughout the anterior skull base is unknown, although the anterior cribriform plate has been proposed as the most frequent location. The purpose of this study was to identify sites of predilection in order to provide assistance for clinicians in finding occult leaks and increase the understanding of the etiology of this pathology.

METHODS

The authors performed a retrospective review of a prospectively acquired surgical database of all endonasal endoscopic surgeries performed at Weill Cornell Medical College by the senior authors. Spontaneous CSF fistulas of the anterior skull base were identified. The anatomical sites of the defects were located on radiographic images and normalized to a theoretical 4 × 2 grid representing the anterior midline skull base. Data from the left and right skull base were combined to increase statistical power. This grid was then used to analyze the distribution of defects. Frequency analysis was performed by means of a chi-square test, with a subsequent Monte Carlo simulation to further strengthen the statistical support of the conclusions.

RESULTS

Nineteen cases of spontaneous CSF fistulas were identified. Frequency analysis using chi-square indicated a nonrandom distribution of sites (p = 0.035). Monte Carlo simulation supported this conclusion (p = 0.034). Seventy-four percent of cases occurred in the cribriform plate (p = 0.086). Moreover, 37% of all defects occurred in the posterior third of the cribriform plate.

CONCLUSIONS

Anterior skull base spontaneous CSF leaks are distributed in a nonrandom fashion. The most likely site of origin of the spontaneous CSF leaks of the anterior midline skull base is the cribriform plate, particularly the posterior third of the plate, likely because of the lack of significant thick bony buttressing. Clinicians searching for occult spontaneous leaks of the anterior skull base should examine the cribriform plate, especially the posterior third with particularly close scrutiny.

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Malte Ottenhausen, Kavelin Rumalla, Iyan Younus, Shlomo Minkowitz, Apostolos John Tsiouris, and Theodore H. Schwartz

OBJECTIVE

Resection of supratentorial meningiomas is generally considered a low-risk procedure, but tumors involving the rolandic cortex present a unique challenge. The rate of motor function deterioration associated with resecting such tumors is not well described in the literature. Thus, the authors sought to report the rates and predictors of postoperative motor deficit following the resection of rolandic meningiomas to assist with patient counseling and surgical decision-making.

METHODS

An institution’s pathology database was screened for meningiomas removed between 2000 and 2017, and patients with neuroradiological evidence of rolandic involvement were identified. Parameters screened as potential predictors included patient age, sex, preoperative motor severity, tumor location, tumor origin (falx vs convexity), histological grade, FLAIR signal (T2-weighted MRI), venous involvement (T1-weighted MRI with contrast), intratumoral hemorrhage, embolization, and degree of resection (Simpson grade). Variables of interest included preoperative weakness and postoperative motor decline (novel or worsened permanent deficit). The SPSS univariate and bivariate analysis functions were used, and statistical significance was determined with alpha < 0.05.

RESULTS

In 89 patients who had undergone resection of convexity (80.9%) or parasagittal (19.1%) rolandic meningiomas, a postoperative motor decline occurred in 24.7%. Of 53 patients (59.6%) with preoperative motor deficits, 60.3% improved, 13.2% were unchanged, and 26.4% worsened following surgery. Among the 36 patients without preoperative deficits, 22.2% developed new weakness. Predictors of preoperative motor deficit included tumor size (41.6 vs 33.2 cm3, p = 0.040) and presence of FLAIR signal (69.8% vs 50.0%, p = 0.046). Predictors of postoperative motor decline were preoperative motor deficit (47.2% vs 22.2%, p = 0.017), minor (compared with severe) preoperative weakness (25.6% vs 21.4%, p < 0.001), and preoperative embolization (54.5% vs 20.5%, p = 0.014). Factors that trended toward significance included parafalcine tumor origin (41.2% vs 20.8% convexity, p = 0.08), significant venous involvement (44.4% vs 23.5% none, p = 0.09), and Simpson grade II+ (34.2% vs 17.6% grade I, p = 0.07).

CONCLUSIONS

Resection of rolandic area meningiomas carries a high rate of postoperative morbidity and deserves special preoperative planning. Large tumor size, peritumoral edema, preoperative embolization, parafalcine origin, and venous involvement may further increase the risk. Alternative surgical strategies, such as aggressive internal debulking, may prevent motor decline in a subset of high-risk patients.

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Benjamin I. Rapoport, Michael W. McDermott, and Theodore H. Schwartz