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Hani J. Marcus, David Choi and Neil L. Dorward

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Joseph Gabrieli, Nader-Antoine Sourour, Dorian Chauvet, Federico Di Maria, Jacques Chiras and Frédéric Clarençon

The posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA) is a vessel located between the intra- and extracranial circulation. The artery is characterized by a complex embryological development and numerous anatomical variants. The authors present a case of the PICA supplied by both a hypertrophic anterior spinal artery and a hypoplastic bulbar artery. This unusual arrangement somehow completes the list of previously published variants, and the spontaneous rupture of a related aneurysm confirmed the fragility of this network. The authors discuss anatomical and treatment considerations.

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Dorian Chauvet, Stéphane Hans, Antoine Missistrano, Celeste Rebours, Wissame El Bakkouri and Guillaume Lot

OBJECTIVE

The aim of this study was to confirm the feasibility of an innovative transoral robotic surgery (TORS), using the da Vinci Surgical System, for patients with sellar tumors. This technique was designed to offer a new minimally invasive approach, without soft-palate splitting, that avoids the rhinological side effects of classic endonasal approaches.

METHODS

The authors performed a prospective study of TORS in patients with symptomatic sellar tumors. Specific anatomical features were required for inclusion in the study and were determined on the basis of preoperative open-mouth CT scans of the brain. The main outcome measure was sellar accessibility using the robot. Resection quality, mean operative time, postoperative changes in patients' vision, side effects, and complications were additionally reported.

RESULTS

Between February and May 2016, 4 patients (all female, mean age 49.5 years) underwent TORS for resection of sellar tumors as participants in this study. All patients presented with symptomatic visual deficits confirmed as bitemporal hemianopsia. All tumors had a suprasellar portion and a cystic part. In all 4 cases, the operation was performed via TORS, without the need for a second surgery. Sella turcica accessibility was satisfactory in all cases. In 3 cases, tumor resection was complete. The mean operative time was 2 hours 43 minutes. Three patients had a significant visual improvement at Day 1. No rhinological side effects or complications in patients occurred. No pathological examination was performed regarding the fluid component of the tumors. There was 1 postoperative delayed CSF leak and 1 case of transient diabetes insipidus. Side effects specific to TORS included minor sore throat, transient hypernasal speech, and 1 case of delayed otitis media. The mean length of hospital stay and mean follow up were 8.25 days and 82 days, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS

To our knowledge, this is the first report of the surgical treatment of sellar tumors by means of a minimally invasive TORS. This approach using the da Vinci Surgical System seems feasible and constitutes an innovative neurosurgical technique that may avoid the adverse side effects and technical disadvantages of the classic transsphenoidal route. Moreover, TORS allows an inferosuperior approach to the sella turcica, which is a key point, as the tumor is approached in the direction of its growth.

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Robert Fahed, Frédéric Clarençon, Nader-Antoine Sourour, Dorian Chauvet, Lise Le Jean, Jacques Chiras and Federico Di Maria

One of the procedural risks in arteriovenous malformation (AVM) embolization is possible migration of the embolic agent into the venous drainage with an incomplete nidus occlusion, which may lead to severe hemorrhagic complications.

This report presents the case of a 29-year-old man who presented with a deep intraparenchymal hematoma on the left side secondary to the spontaneous rupture of a claustral AVM. Upon resorption of the hematoma, the patient underwent an initial therapeutic session of N-butyl-2 cyanoacrylate endovascular embolization, with the purpose of reducing the AVM volume and flow before performing Gamma Knife radiosurgery. After glue injection into one of the arterial feeders, the control angiography showed a partial migration of the glue cast into the straight sinus, with most of the nidus still visible. Because of the bleeding risk due to possible venous hypertension, it was decided to try to retrieve the glue from the vein by using a stent retriever via jugular access. This maneuver allowed a nearly complete removal of the glue cast, thereby restoring normal venous flow drainage. The patient showed no clinical worsening after the procedure.

To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report of the use of the Solitaire FR device as a rescue glue retriever. This method should be considered by physicians in cases of unintended glue migration into the venous circulation during AVM embolization.

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Dorian Chauvet, Laurent Marsac, Mathieu Pernot, Anne-Laure Boch, Rémy Guillevin, Najat Salameh, Line Souris, Luc Darrasse, Mathias Fink, Mickaël Tanter and Jean-François Aubry

Object

This work aimed at evaluating the accuracy of MR-guided high-intensity focused ultrasound (MRgHIFU) brain therapy in human cadaver heads.

Methods

Eighteen heads of fresh human cadavers were removed with a dedicated protocol preventing intracerebral air penetration. The MR images allowed determination of the ultrasonic target: a part of the thalamic nucleus ventralis intermedius implicated in essential tremor. Osseous aberrations were corrected with simulation-based time reversal by using CT data from the heads. The ultrasonic session was performed with a 512-element phased-array transducer system operating at 1 MHz under stereotactic conditions with thermometric real-time MR monitoring performed using a 1.5-T imager.

Results

Dissection, imaging, targeting, and planning have validated the feasibility of this human cadaver model. The average temperature elevation measured by proton resonance frequency shift was 7.9°C ± 3°C. Based on MRI data, the accuracy of MRgHIFU is 0.4 ± 1 mm along the right/left axis, 0.7 ± 1.2 mm along the dorsal/ventral axis, and 0.5 ± 2.4 mm in the rostral/caudal axis.

Conclusions

Despite its limits (temperature, vascularization), the human cadaver model is effective for studying the accuracy of MRgHIFU brain therapy. With the 1-MHz system investigated here, there is millimetric accuracy.