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Johannes Platz, Erdem Güresir, Marlies Wagner, Volker Seifert and Juergen Konczalla

OBJECTIVE

Delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) has a major impact on the outcome of patients suffering from aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). The aim of this study was to assess the influence of an additional intracerebral hematoma (ICH) on the occurrence of DCI.

METHODS

The authors conducted a single-center retrospective analysis of cases of SAH involving patients treated between 2006 and 2011. Patients who died or were transferred to another institution within 10 days after SAH without the occurrence of DCI were excluded from the analysis.

RESULTS

Additional ICH was present in 123 (24.4%) of 504 included patients (66.7% female). ICH was classified as frontal in 72 patients, temporal in 24, and perisylvian in 27. DCI occurred in 183 patients (36.3%). A total of 59 (32.2%) of these 183 patients presented with additional ICH, compared with 64 (19.9%) of the 321 without DCI (p = 0.002). In addition, DCI was detected significantly more frequently in patients with higher World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies (WFNS) grades.

The authors compared the original and modified Fisher Scales with respect to the occurrence of DCI. The modified Fisher Scale (mFS) was superior to the original Fisher Scale (oFS) in predicting DCI. Furthermore, they suggest a new classification based on the mFS, which demonstrates the impact of additional ICH on the occurrence of DCI.

After the different scales were corrected for age, sex, WFNS score, and aneurysm site, the oFS no longer was predictive for the occurrence of DCI, while the new scale demonstrated a superior capacity for prediction as compared with the mFS.

CONCLUSIONS

Additional ICH was associated with an increased risk of DCI in this study. Furthermore, adding the presence or absence of ICH to the mFS improved the identification of patients at the highest risk for the development of DCI. Thus, a simple adjustment of the mFS might help to identify patients at high risk for DCI.

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Juergen Konczalla, Sepide Kashefiolasl, Nina Brawanski, Christian Senft, Volker Seifert and Johannes Platz

OBJECT

Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is usually caused by a ruptured intracranial aneurysm, but in some patients no source of hemorrhage can be detected. More recent data showed increasing numbers of cases of spontaneous nonaneurysmal SAH (NASAH). The aim of this study was to analyze factors, especially the use of antithrombotic medications such as systemic anticoagulation or antiplatelet agents (aCPs), influencing the increasing numbers of cases of NASAH and the clinical outcome.

METHODS

Between 1999 and 2013, 214 patients who were admitted to the authors’ institution suffered from NASAH, 14% of all patients with SAH. Outcome was assessed according to the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) at 6 months. Risk factors were identified based on the outcome.

RESULTS

The number of patients with NASAH increased significantly in the last 15 years of the study period. There was a statistically significant increase in the rate of nonperimesencephalic (NPM)-SAH occurrence and aCP use, while the proportion of elderly patients remained stable. Favorable outcome (mRS 0–2) was achieved in 85% of cases, but patients treated with aCPs had a significantly higher risk for an unfavorable outcome. Further analysis showed that elderly patients, and especially the subgroup with a Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern, had a high risk for an unfavorable outcome, whereas the subgroup of NPM-SAH without a Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern had a favorable outcome, similar to perimesencephalic (PM)-SAH.

CONCLUSIONS

Over the years, a significant increase in the number of patients with NASAH has been observed. Also, the rate of aCP use has increased significantly. Risk factors for an unfavorable outcome were age > 65 years, Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern, and aCP use. Both “PM-SAH” and “NPM-SAH without a Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern” had excellent outcomes. Patients with NASAH and a Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern had a significantly higher risk for an unfavorable outcome and death. Therefore, for further investigations, NPM-SAH should be stratified into patients with or without a Fisher Grade 3 bleeding pattern. Also, cases of spontaneous SAH should be stratified into NASAH and aneurysmal SAH.

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Juergen Konczalla, Johannes Platz, Stephan Fichtlscherer, Haitham Mutlak, Ulrich Strouhal and Volker Seifert

OBJECTIVE

To date, treatment of complex unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) remains challenging. Therefore, advanced techniques are required to achieve an optimal result in treating these patients safely. In this study, the safety and efficacy of rapid ventricular pacing (RVP) to facilitate microsurgical clip reconstruction was investigated prospectively in a joined neurosurgery, anesthesiology, and cardiology study.

METHODS

Patients with complex UIAs were prospectively enrolled. Both the safety and efficacy of RVP were evaluated by recording cardiovascular events and outcomes of patients as well as the amount of aneurysm occlusion after the surgical clip reconstruction procedure. A questionnaire was used to evaluate aneurysm preparation and clip application under RVP.

RESULTS

Twenty patients (mean age 51.6 years, range 28–66 years) were included in this study. Electrode positioning was easy in 19 (95%) of 20 patients, and removal of electrodes was easily accomplished in all patients (100%). No complications associated with the placement of the pacing electrodes occurred, such as cardiac perforation or cardiac tamponade. RVP was applied in 16 patients. The mean aneurysm size was 11.1 ± 5.5 mm (range 6–30 mm). RVP proved to be a very helpful tool in aneurysm preparation and clip application in 15 (94%) of 16 patients. RVP was used for a mean duration of 60 ± 25 seconds, a mean heart rate of 173 ± 23 bpm (range 150–210 bpm), and a reduction of mean arterial pressure to 35–55 mm Hg. RVP leads to softening of the aneurysm sac facilitating its mobilization, clip application, and closure of the clip blades. In 2 patients, cardiac events were documented that resolved without permanent sequelae in both. In every patient with successful RVP (n = 14) a total or near-total aneurysm occlusion was documented. In the 1 patient in whom the second RVP failed due to pacemaker electrode dislocation, additional temporary clipping was required to secure the aneurysm, but was not as sufficient as RVP. This led to an incomplete clipping of the aneurysm and finally a remnant on postoperative digital subtraction angiography. A pacemaker lead dislocation occurred in 3 (19%) of 16 patients, but intraoperative repositioning requires less than 20 seconds. Outcome was favorable in all patients according to the modified Rankin Scale.

CONCLUSIONS

To the best of the authors’ knowledge this is the first prospective interdisciplinary study of RVP use in patients with UIAs. RVP is an elegant technique that facilitates clip reconstruction in complex UIAs. The safety of the procedure is good. However, because this procedure requires extensive preoperative cardiological workup of the patient and an experienced neurosurgery and neuroanesthesiology team with much cerebrovascular expertise, actually it remains reserved for selected elective cases and highly specialized centers.

Clinical trial registration no.: NCT02766972 (clinicaltrials.gov)

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Patrick Schuss, Jürgen Konczalla, Johannes Platz, Hartmut Vatter, Volker Seifert and Erdem Güresir

Object

Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) with simultaneous acute subdural hematoma (SDH) is a severe disease. The authors' objective was to analyze the incidence, prognosis, and clinical outcome of patients suffering from aneurysm-related SAH and space-occupying acute SDH.

Methods

Between June 1999 and June 2011, data from 989 patients with aneurysm-related SAH were prospectively entered into a database. Eighteen patients (1.8%) presented with aneurysm-related SAH and space-occupying acute SDH. The treatment decision (clip or coil) was based on an interdisciplinary approach. Outcome was assessed according to the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) at 6 months and was dichotomized into favorable outcome (mRS Score 0–2) versus unfavorable outcome (mRS Score 3–6). PubMed was searched for published studies of aneurysm-related SAH and acute SDH to gain a larger population. A multivariate regression analysis was performed on the pooled data.

Results

Literature data, including the current series, revealed a total of 111 patients. Overall, 38 (34%) of 111 patients with aneurysm-related SAH and acute SDH achieved favorable outcome. Favorable outcome was achieved in 68% of patients with good-grade clinical presentation on admission (Hunt and Hess Grades I–III) versus 23% of the patients with poor-grade presentation (Hunt and Hess Grades IV and V, p < 0.0001). In the multivariate analysis, poor clinical condition at admission was the only predictor for unfavorable outcome (p = 0.02).

Conclusions

The present data confirm that patients with aneurysm-related SAH and acute SDH, even when presenting in poor clinical condition, might achieve favorable outcome. Therefore, treatment of patients with SAH and acute SDH should not be discontinued, but careful individual decision making is necessary for each patient.

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Johannes Platz, Marlies Wagner, Erdem Güresir, Se-Jong You, Juergen Konczalla, Richard du Mesnil de Rochemont, Joachim Berkefeld and Volker Seifert

OBJECTIVE

Diffusion-weighted MRI was used to assess periprocedural lesion load after repair of unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIA) by microsurgical clipping (MC) and endovascular coiling (EC).

METHODS

Patients with UIA were assigned to undergo MC or EC according to interdisciplinary consensus and underwent diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) 1 day before and 1 day after aneurysm treatment. Newly detected lesions by DWI after treatment were the primary end point of this prospective study. Lesions detected by DWI were categorized as follows: A) 1–3 DWI spots < 10 mm, B) > 3 DWI spots < 10 mm, C) single DWI lesion > 10 mm, or D) DWI lesion related to surgical access.

RESULTS

Between 2010 and 2014, 99 cases were included. Sixty-two UIA were treated by MC and 37 by EC. There were no significant differences between groups in age, sex, aneurysm size, occurrence of multiple aneurysms in 1 patient, or presence of lesions detected by DWI before treatment. Aneurysms treated by EC were significantly more often located in the posterior circulation (p < 0.001). Diffusion-weighted MRI detected new lesions in 27 (43.5%) and 20 (54.1%) patients after MC and EC, respectively (not significant). The pattern of lesions detected by DWI varied significantly between groups (p < 0.001). Microembolic lesions (A and B) found on DWI were detected more frequently after EC (A, 14 cases; B, 5 cases) than after MC (A, 5 cases), whereas C and D were rare after EC (C, 1 case) and occurred more often after MC (C, 12 cases and D, 10 cases). No procedure-related unfavorable outcomes were detected.

CONCLUSIONS

According to the specific techniques, lesion patterns differ between MC and EC, whereas the frequency of new lesions found on DWI is similar after occlusion of UIA. In general, the lesion load was low in both groups, and lesions were clinically silent.

Clinical trial registration no.: NCT01490463 (clinicaltrials.gov)