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Pavan Jagannathan and Jay Jagannathan

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Editorial

Pituitary surgery

Martin H. Weiss

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Jason P. Sheehan and Jay Jagannathan

Intracranial radiosurgery has been proved effective for the treatment of brain metastasis. The treatment of paraspinal and spinal metastasis with spinal radiosurgery represents a natural extension of the principles of intracranial radiosurgery. However, spinal radiosurgery is a far more complicated process than intracranial radiosurgery. Larger treatment volumes, numerous organs at risk, and the inability to utilize rigid, frame-based immobilization all contribute to the substantially more complex process of spinal radiosurgery.

Beyond the convenience of a shorter duration of treatment for the patient, spinal radiosurgery affords a greater biological equivalent dose to a metastatic lesion than conventional radiotherapy fractionation schemes. This appears to translate into a high rate of tumor control and fast pain relief for patients. The minimally invasive nature of this approach is consistent with trends in open spinal surgery and helps to maintain or improve a patient's quality of life. Spinal radiosurgery has expanded the neurosurgical treatment armamentarium for patients with spinal and paraspinal metastasis.

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Jay Jagannathan, Jason P. Sheehan and John A. Jane Jr.

✓ The treatment of patients with Cushing disease and without magnetic resonance (MR) imaging evidence of Cushing disease (that is, negative MR imaging) is discussed in this paper. Magnetic resonance imaging is the diagnostic modality of choice in Cushing disease, but in up to 40% of these patients negative imaging can be caused by tumor-related factors and limitations in imaging techniques. In cases in which the MR imaging is negative, it is critical to make sure that the diagnosis of Cushing disease is correct. This can be accomplished by performing a complete laboratory and imaging workup, including dexamethasone suppression tests, imaging of the adrenal glands, and inferior petrosal sinus sampling when appropriate. If these evaluations suggest a pituitary source of the hypercortisolemia, then transsphenoidal surgery remains the treatment of choice. The authors favor the endoscopic approach because it gives a wider and more magnified view of the sella and allows inspection of the medial cavernous sinus walls. Radiosurgery is an effective treatment option in patients with persistent Cushing disease. When a target cannot be found on MR imaging, one can target the entire sellar region with radiosurgery.

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Jay Jagannathan, Aaron S. Dumont, John A. Jane Jr. and Edward R. Laws Jr.

The diagnosis and management of pediatric sellar lesions is discussed in this paper. Craniopharyngiomas account for the majority of pediatric sellar masses, and pituitary adenomas are extremely uncommon during childhood. The diagnosis of sellar lesions involves a multidisciplinary effort, and detailed endocrinological, ophthalmological, and neurological testing is critical in the evaluation of a new sellar mass. The management of pituitary adenomas varies depending on the entity. For most tumors other than prolactinomas, transsphenoidal resection remains the mainstay of treatment. Less invasive methods, such as endoscopic transsphenoidal surgery and stereotactic radiosurgery, have shown promise as primary and adjuvant treatment modalities, respectively.

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Jay Jagannathan, Daniel M. Prevedello, Vivek S. Ayer, Aaron S. Dumont, John A. Jane Jr. and Edward R. Laws

Object

In this study the authors address the efficacy and safety of frameless stereotaxy in transsphenoidal surgery.

Methods

One thousand transsphenoidal operations were performed at the authors' institution between June 2000 and July 2005. This series consists of a retrospective review of 176 patients entered in a prospectively obtained database who underwent frameless stereotactic transsphenoidal surgery in which magnetic resonance (MR) imaging, computerized tomography (CT) scanning, or fluoroscopic guidance was used. Of the 176 patients, 104 (59%) had suprasellar extension of their tumor, 70 (40%) had involvement of the visual apparatus, and 65 (37%) had cavernous sinus involvement. All patients underwent detailed pre- and postoperative neurological, endocrinological, radiographic, and ophthalmological follow-up evaluations. Records were reviewed retrospectively for intraoperative and postoperative complications related to the surgical approach.

No instances of visual deterioration, carotid artery (CA) stenosis, or stroke were observed following transsphenoidal surgery. Only one patient sustained damage to the CA intraoperatively, and this was controlled in the operating room. Five patients (3%) required an intensive care unit stay postoperatively. Intraoperative cerebrospinal fluid leakage was encountered in 112 patients (64%) and was more frequently observed in tumors with suprasellar involvement.

Conclusions

Frameless stereotaxy is a safe and effective modality for the treatment of recurrent or invasive sellar masses. All three frameless stereotaxy modalities provided accurate information regarding the anatomical midline and the trajectory to the sella turcica. The MR imaging, CT scanning, and fluoroscopic stereotaxy modalities all have unique advantages as well as specific limitations.

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Jay Jagannathan, Jonathan H. Sherman, Tom Szabo, Christopher I. Shaffrey and John A. Jane Sr.

Object

This study details long-term clinical and radiographic outcomes following single-level posterior cervical foraminotomy for degenerative disc or osteophyte disease.

Methods

The authors conducted a retrospective review of 162 cases involving patients treated by a single surgeon using a posterior cervical foraminotomy. Inclusion criteria were a minimum of 5 years' clinical and radiographic follow-up and unilateral single-level posterior cervical foraminotomy for degenerative disease between C-3 and C-7. Patients who had undergone previous operations, those who underwent bilateral procedures, and those who underwent foraminotomy as part of a larger laminectomy were excluded. The Neck Disability Index (NDI) was used for clinical follow-up, and radiographic follow-up was performed using static and dynamic lateral radiographs to compare focal and segmental alignment and changes in disc-space height.

Results

The mean presenting NDI score was 18 (range 2–39). The most common presenting symptoms were radiculopathy (110 patients [68%]), neck pain (85 patients [52%]), and subjective weakness (91 patients [56%]). The mean preoperative focal angulation at the surgically treated level was 4.2° (median 4.1°, range 7.3–15.3°), and the mean preoperative segmental curvature between C-2 and C-7 was 18.0° (median 19.3°, range −22.1 to 39.3°). The mean postoperative NDI score was 8 (range 0–39). Improvement in NDI scores was seen in 150 patients (93%). Resolution of radiculopathy was experienced by 104 patients (95% of patients with radiculopathy). The mean radiographic follow-up was 77.3 months (range 60–177 months). No statistically significant changes in focal or segmental kyphosis or disc-space height were seen among the overall cohort with time (Cox proportional hazards analysis and Student t-test, p > 0.05). The mean postoperative focal angulation was 4.1° (median 3.9°, range −9.9° to 15.1°) and mean postoperative segmental angulation was 17.6° (median 15.4°, range −40.2 to 35.3°). Postoperative instability on dynamic imaging was present in 8 patients (4.9%); 7 of these patients were clinically asymptomatic and were treated conservatively, and 1 required cervical fusion. Postoperative loss of lordosis (defined as segmental Cobb angle < 10°) was seen in 30 patients (20%), 9 of whom had clinical symptoms and 4 of whom required further surgical correction. Factors associated with worsening sagittal alignment (Cox proportional hazards analysis, p < 0.05) included age > 60 at initial surgery, the presence of preoperative cervical lordosis of < 10°, and the need for posterior surgery after the initial foraminotomy

Conclusions

The posterior cervical foraminotomy is highly effective in treating patients with cervical radiculopathy and results in long-lasting pain relief and improved quality-of-life outcomes in most patients. Long-term radiographic follow-up shows no significant trend toward kyphosis, although select patient subsets (patients older than 60 years, patients who had previous posterior surgery, and patients with < 10° of lordosis preoperatively) appear to be at higher risk and require closer follow-up.

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Jay Jagannathan, Jonathan H. Sherman, Gautam U. Mehta and Lawrence S. Chin

✓Stereotactic radiosurgery is a neurosurgical modality in which a target lesion can be irradiated while sparing normal brain tissue. In some respects, brain metastasis is well suited for radiosurgery, as metastatic lesions tend to be small and well circumscribed and displace (but do not infiltrate) normal brain tissue, facilitating the delivery of radiation. Advances in stereotactic radiosurgical planning, such as blocking patterns and beam shaping, have allowed further targeting of discrete lesions while minimizing the effect of radiation toxicity on the central nervous system. In this paper the authors review the radiobiology of brain metastases and stereotactic radiosurgical approaches that can be used to treat these tumors safely.

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Relevance of high Ki-67 in pituitary adenomas

Case report and review of the literature

Daniel M. Prevedello, Jay Jagannathan, John A. Jane Jr., M. Beatriz S. Lopes and Edward R. Laws Jr.

Pituitary adenomas are heterogeneous in growth rate, invasiveness, and recurrence. To understand the biological behavior of the individual adenoma more fully, cell proliferation markers such as monoclonal antibodies targeted against the Ki-67 antigen have been applied. The Ki-67 antigen is a protein related to cell proliferation and is expressed in cell nuclei throughout the entire cell cycle. The authors report the case of an extremely rapidly growing pituitary adenoma with cavernous sinus invasion. The lesion, which displayed a high Ki-67 labeling index (LI; 22%), was found in a 54-year-old woman who presented with diplopia and headaches. The patient underwent three transsphenoidal operations in less than 6 months and, ultimately, was treated with fractionated intensity-modulated radiation therapy. The relationships between high Ki-67 LIs and tumor recurrence, invasiveness, and growth velocity in pituitary adenomas are reviewed.

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Jay Jagannathan, Aaron S. Dumont, Daniel M. Prevedello, Christopher I. Shaffrey and John A. Jane Jr.

✓Sports-related injuries to the spine, although relatively rare compared with head injuries, contribute to significant morbidity and mortality in children. The reported incidence of traumatic cervical spine injury in pediatric athletes varies, and most studies are limited because of the low prevalence of injury. The anatomical and biomechanical differences between the immature spine of pediatric patients and the mature spine of adults that make pediatric patients more susceptible to injury include a greater mobility of the spine due to ligamentous laxity, shallow angulations of facet joints, immature development of neck musculature, and incomplete ossification of the vertebrae. As a result of these differences, 60 to 80% of all pediatric vertebral injuries occur in the cervical region. Understanding pediatric injury biomechanics in the cervical spine is important to the neurosurgeon, because coaches, parents, and athletes who place themselves in positions known to be associated with spinal cord injury (SCI) run a higher risk of such injury and paralysis. The mechanisms of SCI can be broadly subclassified into five types: axial loading, dislocation, lateral bending, rotation, and hyperflexion/hyperextension, although severe injuries often result from a combination of more than one of these subtypes. The aim of this review was to detail the characteristics and management of pediatric cervical spine injury.