Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 9 of 9 items for :

  • Author or Editor: Volker Seifert x
  • Neurosurgical Focus x
Clear All Modify Search
Full access

Volker Seifert and Dietmar Stolke

Aneurysms of the basilar trunk and vertebrobasilar junction represent an exceptional challenge to the neurosurgeon. Surgical access to these deep and confined lesions is hampered by the direct proximity of highly vulnerable neural structures such as the brainstem and cranial nerves, as well as by the structure of the petrous bone, which blocks direct surgical approach to these aneurysms. A number of surgical tactics consisting of different supra- and infratentorial approaches have been applied over the years to gain access to these treacherous lesions. Only recently have lateral approaches, such as the anterior transpetrosal, the retrolabyrinthine-transsigmoidal, and the combined supra/infratentorial-posterior transpetrosal approaches, directed through parts of the petrous bone, been reported for surgery of basilar trunk and vertebrobasilar junction aneurysms. Because detailed reports of direct operative intervention using the transpetrosal route for these rare and difficult lesions are scarce, the authors present their surgical experiences in nine patients with basilar trunk and vertebrobasilar junction aneurysms, in whom they operated via the supra/infratentorial-posterior transpetrosal approach. In eight patients, including one with a giant partially thrombosed basilar trunk aneurysm, direct clipping of the aneurysm via the transpetrosal route was possible. In one patient with a giant vertebrobasilar junction aneurysm, the completely calcified aneurysm sac was resected after occlusion of the vertebral artery. In total, one patient died and another experienced postoperative accentuation of preexisting cranial nerve deficits. Two patients had transient cerebrospinal fluid leakage, and the postoperative course was uneventful in the remaining seven. Postoperative angiography demonstrated complete aneurysm clipping in eight patients and relief of preoperative brainstem compression in the patient with the giant vertebrobasilar junction aneurysm. It is concluded that the supra/infratentorial-posterior transpetrosal approach allows excellent access to the basilar artery trunk and vertebrobasilar junction and can be considered the approach of choice to selected aneurysms located in this area.

Free access

Ági Oszvald, Hartmut Vatter, Christian Byhahn, Volker Seifert and Erdem Güresir

Object

Quality and safety are basic concerns in any medical practice. Especially in daily surgical practice, with increasing turnover and shortened procedure times, attention to these topics needs to be assured. Starting in 2007, the authors used a perioperative checklist in all elective procedures and extended the checklist in January 2011 according to the so-called team time-out principles, with additional assessment of patient identity and the planned surgical procedure performed immediately before skin incision, including the emergency cases.

Methods

The advanced perioperative checklist includes parts for patient identification, preoperative assessments, team time-out, postoperative treatment, and imaging controls. All parts are signed by the responsible physician except for the team time-out, which is performed and signed by the theater nurse on behalf of the surgeon immediately before skin incision.

Results

Between January 2007 and December 2010, 1 wrong-sided bur hole in an emergency case and 1 wrong-sided lumbar approach in an elective case (of 8795 surgical procedures) occurred in the authors' department. Using the advanced perioperative checklist including the team time-out principles, no error occurred in 3595 surgical procedures (January 2011–June 2012). In the authors' department all team members appreciate the chance to focus on the patient, the surgical procedure, and expected difficulties. The number of incomplete checklists and of patients not being transferred into the operating room was lowered significantly (p = 0.002) after implementing the advanced perioperative checklist.

Conclusions

In the authors' daily experience, the advanced perioperative checklist developed according to the team time-out principles improves preoperative workup and the focus of the entire team. The focus is drawn to the procedure, expected difficulties of the surgery, and special needs in the treatment of the particular patient. Especially in emergency situations, the team time-out synchronizes the involved team members and helps to improve patient safety.

Free access

Stephan Dützmann, Florian Geßler, Gerhard Marquardt, Volker Seifert and Christian Senft

Object

The authors performed a study to evaluate whether preoperative assessment of prothrombin time (PT) is mandatory in patients undergoing routinely planned neurosurgical procedures.

Methods

The charts of all patients admitted to general wards of the authors' department for routinely planned surgery (excluding trauma and ICU patients) between 2006 and 2010 were retrospectively reviewed. The authors assessed preoperative PT and the clinical courses of all patients, with special consideration for patients receiving coagulation factor substitution. All cases involving hemorrhagic complications were analyzed in detail with regard to pre- and postoperative PT abnormalities. Prothrombin time was expressed as the international normalized ratio, and values greater than 1.28 were regarded as elevated.

Results

Clinical courses and PT values of 4310 patients were reviewed. Of these, 33 patients (0.7%) suffered hemorrhagic complications requiring repeat surgery. Thirty-one patients (94%) had a normal PT before the initial operation, while 2 patients had slightly elevated PT values of 1.33 and 1.65, which were anticipated based on the patient's history. In the latter 2 cases, surgery was performed without prior correction of PT. Preoperatively, PT was elevated in 78 patients (1.8%). In 73 (93.6%) of the 78 patients, the PT elevation was expected and explained by each patient's medical history. In only 5 (0.1%) of 4310 patients did we find an unexpected PT elevation (mean 1.53, range 1.37–1.74). All 5 patients underwent surgery without complications, while 2 had received coagulation factor substitution preoperatively, as requested by the surgeon, because of an estimated risk of bleeding complications. None of the 5 patients received coagulation factor substitution postoperatively, and later detailed laboratory studies ruled out single coagulation factor deficiencies. There was no statistically significant association between preoperatively elevated PT levels and the occurrence of hemorrhagic complications (p = 0.12). Before the second procedure but not before the initial operation, 4 (12%) of the 33 patients had elevated PT.

Conclusions

The findings suggest that the value of preoperative PT testing is limited in patients in whom a normal history can be ascertained. Close postoperative PT control is necessary in every neurosurgical patient, and better tests need to be developed to identify patients who are prone to hemorrhagic complications.

Full access

Matthias Setzer, Hartmut Vatter, Gerhard Marquardt, Volker Seifert and Frank D. Vrionis

Object

In this report, the authors describe their experience in the surgical management of spinal meningiomas at two neurosurgical centers. The results of a literature review are also presented.

Methods

Eighty consecutive patients (22 men and 58 women) with spinal meningiomas who had undergone an operation at two specific neurosurgical centers were included in this study. Functional outcomes were evaluated using univariate and multivariate analyses. A review of the literature yielded an additional 651 patients with spinal meningiomas from 9 large studies.

Results

On multivariate analysis, the variable of a poor preoperative neurological state (p < 0.02, odds ratio [OR] 13.6, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.6–71.4) and invasion of the arachnoid/pia mater (p < 0.03, OR 15.2, 95% CI 2.5–90.4) were independent predictors of a poor outcome, whereas invasion of the arachnoid/pia (p < 0.02, OR 8.9, 95% CI 2.2–35) and duration of symptoms (p < 0.001, OR 1.12/month, 95% CI 1.05–1.2) predicted no improvement (stable or deteriorated condition). The Cox proportional hazards regression analysis showed three significant predictor variables for recurrence: invasion of the arachnoid/pia (p < 0.05; hazard ratio [HR] 1.8, 95% CI 1.2–3.6), Simpson resection grade (p < 0.012, HR 6.8, 95% CI 1.5–3.0), and histological tumor grade (Grade I; p < 0.001, HR 0.001–0.17).

Conclusions

Because of the excellent outcome of surgery for benign spinal meningiomas and the association between duration of symptoms and neurological compromise with a poor functional outcome, early operation is the treatment of choice. In cases of malignant transformation, adjuvant therapies must be considered.

Free access

Sae-Yeon Won, Daniel Dubinski, Markus Bruder, Adriano Cattani, Volker Seifert and Juergen Konczalla

OBJECTIVE

Isolated acute subdural hematoma (aSDH) is increasing in older populations and so is the use of oral anticoagulant therapy (OAT). The dramatic increase of OAT—with direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) as well as with conventional anticoagulants—is leading to changes in the care of patients who present with aSDH while receiving OAT. The purpose of this study was to determine the management and outcome of patients being treated with OAT at the time of aSDH presentation.

METHODS

In this single-center, retrospective study, the authors analyzed 116 consecutive cases involving patients with aSDH treated from January 2007 to June 2016. The following parameters were assessed: patient characteristics, admission status, anticoagulation status, perioperative management, comorbidities, clinical course, and outcome as determined at discharge and through 6 months of follow-up. Oral anticoagulants were classified as thrombocyte inhibitors, vitamin K antagonists, and DOACs. Patients were stratified based on which type of medication they were taking, and subgroup analyses were performed. Predictors of unfavorable outcome at discharge and follow-up were identified.

RESULTS

Of 116 patients, 74 (64%) had been following an OAT regimen at presentation with aSDH. The patients who were taking oral anticoagulants (OAT group) were significantly older (OR 12.5), more often comatose 24 hours postoperatively (OR 2.4), and more often had ≥ 4 comorbidities (OR 3.2) than patients who were not taking oral anticoagulants (no-OAT group). Accordingly, the rate of unfavorable outcome was significantly higher in patients in the OAT group, both at discharge (OR 2.3) and at follow-up (OR 2.2). Of the patients in the OAT group, 37.8% were taking a thrombocyte inhibitor, 54.1% a vitamin K antagonist, and 8.1% DOACs. In all cases, OAT was stopped on discovery of aSDH. For reversal of anticoagulation, patients who were taking a thrombocyte inhibitor received desmopressin 0.4 μg/kg, 1–2 g tranexamic acid, and preoperative transfusion with 2 units of platelets. Patients following other oral anticoagulant regimens received 50 IU/kg of prothrombin complex concentrates and 10 mg of vitamin K. There was no significant difference in the rebleeding rate between the OAT and no-OAT groups. The in-hospital mortality rate was significantly higher for patients who were taking a thrombocyte inhibitor (OR 3.3), whereas patients who were taking a vitamin K antagonist had a significantly higher 6-month mortality rate (OR 2.7). Patients taking DOACs showed a tendency toward unfavorable outcome, with higher mortality rates than patients on conventional OAT or patients in the vitamin K antagonist subgroup. Independent predictors for unfavorable outcome at discharge were comatose status 24 hours after surgery (OR 93.2), rebleeding (OR 9.8), respiratory disease (OR 4.1), and infection (OR 11.1) (Nagelkerke R2 = 0.684). Independent predictors for unfavorable outcome at follow-up were comatose status 24 hours after surgery (OR 12.7), rebleeding (OR 3.1), age ≥ 70 years (OR 3.1), and 6 or more comorbidities (OR 3.1, Nagelkerke R2 = 0.466). OAT itself was not an independent predictor for worse outcome.

CONCLUSIONS

An OAT regimen at the time of presentation with aSDH is associated with increased mortality rates and unfavorable outcome at discharge and follow-up. Thrombocyte inhibitor treatment was associated with increased short-term mortality, whereas vitamin K antagonist treatment was associated with increased long-term mortality. In particular, patients on DOACs were seriously affected, showing more unfavorable outcomes at discharge as well as at follow-up. The suggested medical treatment for aSDH in both OAT and no-OAT patients seems to be effective and reasonable, with comparable rebleeding and favorable outcome rates in the 2 groups. In addition, prior OAT is not a predictor for aSDH outcome.

Full access

Erdem Güresir, Patrick Schuss, Hartmut Vatter, Andreas Raabe, Volker Seifert and Jürgen Beck

Object

The aim of this study was to analyze decompressive craniectomy (DC) in the setting of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) with bleeding, infarction, or brain swelling as the underlying pathology in a large cohort of consecutive patients.

Methods

Decompressive craniectomy was performed in 79 of 939 patients with SAH. Patients were stratified according to the indication for DC: 1) primary brain swelling without or 2) with additional intracerebral hematoma, 3) secondary brain swelling without rebleeding or infarcts, and 4) secondary brain swelling with infarcts or 5) with rebleeding. Outcome was assessed according to the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) at 6 months (mRS Score 0–3 favorable vs 4–6 unfavorable).

Results

Overall, 61 (77.2%) of 79 patients who did and 292 (34%) of the 860 patients who did not undergo DC had a poor clinical grade on admission (World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies Grade IV–V, p < 0.0001). A favorable outcome was attained in 21 (26.6%) of 79 patients who had undergone DC. In a comparison of favorable outcomes in patients with primary (28.0%) or secondary DC (25.5%), no difference could be found (p = 0.8). Subgroup analysis with respect to the underlying indication for DC (brain swelling vs bleeding vs infarction) revealed no difference in the rate of favorable outcomes. On multivariate analysis, acute hydrocephalus (p = 0.009) and clinical signs of herniation (p = 0.02) were significantly associated with an unfavorable outcome.

Conclusions

Based on the data in this study the authors concluded that primary as well as secondary craniectomy might be warranted, regardless of the underlying etiology (hemorrhage, infarction, or brain swelling) and admission clinical grade of the patient. The time from the onset of intractable intracranial pressure to DC seems to be crucial for a favorable outcome, even when a DC is performed late in the disease course after SAH.

Free access

Sueleyman Tas, Frank Staub, Thomas Dombert, Gerhard Marquardt, Christian Senft, Volker Seifert and Stephan Duetzmann

OBJECT

Carpal tunnel syndrome causes increased cross-sectional area (CSA) of the median nerve, which can be assessed by high-definition ultrasonography. It is unclear today, however, whether high-definition ultrasonography may play a role in the postoperative period. This prospective study aimed to determine the natural history of the morphology of the median nerve at the carpal tunnel after surgical decompression assessed by high-definition ultrasonography.

METHODS

Between October and December 2014, patients with suspected carpal tunnel syndrome who were referred to the authors’ center for peripheral neurosurgery were prospectively enrolled and underwent pre- and postoperative (3 months) high-definition ultrasonography, electrophysiology, and clinical testing.

RESULTS

Eighty-one patients were enrolled in the study, and 100% were clinically better at the 3-month follow-up. The mean CSA decreased from 14.7 ± 4.9 mm2 to 12.4 ± 3.4 mm2 (mean ± SD, p < 0.0001). The mean distal motor latency decreased from 6.6 ± 2.4 msec to 4.8 ± 1.0 msec (mean ± SD, p < 0.0001). Ninety-eight percent of patients who were available for electrodiagnostic follow-up showed an improvement of the distal motor latency; only 80% had a reduction in the CSA.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors present the second-largest series of patients with sonographic follow-up after surgical decompression of the carpal tunnel reported in the literature so far. This study, which showed a decrease in size of the median nerve after surgical decompression, suggests that the preoperative increase in median nerve CSA at the carpal tunnel may be due to compression and that enlargement of the median nerve is (partially) reversible.

Free access

Sae-Yeon Won, Daniel Dubinski, Nina Brawanski, Adam Strzelczyk, Volker Seifert, Thomas M. Freiman and Juergen Konczalla

OBJECTIVE

Acute subdural hematoma (aSDH) is a common disease increasing in prevalence given the demographic growth of the aging population. Yet, the benefit of surgical treatment for aSDH and the subsequent functional outcome in elderly patients (age ≥ 80 years) remain unclear. Therefore, the aims of this study were to evaluate the incidence of aSDH in patients 80 years or older, determine overall functional outcome, identify predictors of an unfavorable or favorable outcome, and establish specific risk factors for seizures.

METHODS

The authors retrospectively analyzed patients 80 years and older who presented with isolated aSDH in the past 10 years at their institution. The following parameters were assessed: baseline characteristics, clinical status on admission and 24 hours after surgery, and clinical course. Functional outcome was assessed at discharge and the 3-month follow-up (FU).

RESULTS

In the period from January 2007 to December 2016, 165 patients with aSDH were admitted to the authors’ institution. Sixty-eight patients (41.2%) were 80 years old or older, and the mean age overall was 85 years (range 80–96 years). The incidence of aSDH in the elderly had significantly increased over past decade, with more than 50% of patients admitted to our institution for aSDH now being 80 years or older. The overall mortality rate was 28% at discharge and 48% at the FU. Independent predictors of an unfavorable outcome at discharge were a GCS score ≤ 8 at 24 hours after operation (p < 0.001) and pneumonia (p < 0.02). At the FU, a GCS score ≤ 8 at 24 hours after operation (p < 0.001) and cumulative comorbidities (≥ 5; p < 0.05) were significant independent predictors. All patients with more than 6 comorbidities had died by the FU. Surgical treatment in comatose compared to noncomatose patients had statistically significant, higher mortality rates at discharge and the FU. Still, 23% of the comatose patients and more than 50% of the noncomatose patients had a favorable outcome at the FU (p = 0.06).

CONCLUSIONS

The number of octo- and nonagenarians with aSDH significantly increased over the last decade. These patients can achieve a favorable outcome, especially those with a noncomatose status and fewer than 5 comorbidities. Surgical and nonsurgical treatment of octo- and nonagenarians during and after discharge should be optimized to increase clinical improvement.

Free access

Bedjan Behmanesh, Florian Gessler, Katrin Schnoes, Daniel Dubinski, Sae-Yeon Won, Jürgen Konczalla, Volker Seifert, Lutz Weise and Matthias Setzer

OBJECTIVE

The incidence of patients with pyogenic spinal infection is increasing. In addition to treatment of the spinal infection, early diagnosis of and therapy for coexisting infections, especially infective endocarditis (IE), is an important issue. The aim of this study was to evaluate the proportion of coexisting IE and the value of routine transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) in the management of these patients.

METHODS

The medical history, laboratory data, radiographic findings, treatment modalities, and results of TEE of patients admitted between 2007 and 2017 were analyzed.

RESULTS

During the abovementioned period, 110 of 255 total patients underwent TEE for detection of IE. The detection rate of IE between those patients undergoing and not undergoing TEE was 33% and 3%, respectively (p < 0.0001). Thirty-six percent of patients with IE needed cardiac surgical intervention because of severe valve destruction. Chronic renal failure, heart failure, septic condition at admission, and preexisting heart condition were significantly associated with coexisting IE. The mortality rate in patients with IE was significantly higher than in patients without IE (22% vs 3%, p = 0.002).

CONCLUSIONS

TEE should be performed routinely in all patients with spondylodiscitis.