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Nikhil Bellamkonda, H. Westley Phillips, Jia-Shu Chen, Alexander M. Tucker, Cassia Maniquis, Gary W. Mathern, and Aria Fallah


Rasmussen encephalitis (RE) is a rare inflammatory neurological disorder typically involving one hemisphere and resulting in drug-resistant epilepsy and progressive neurological decline. Here, the authors present seizure outcomes in children who underwent epilepsy surgery for RE at a single institution.


The records of consecutive patients who had undergone epilepsy surgery for RE at the UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital between 1982 and 2018 were retrospectively reviewed. Basic demographic information, seizure history, procedural notes, and postoperative seizure and functional outcome data were analyzed.


The cohort included 44 patients, 41 of whom had sufficient data for analysis. Seizure freedom was achieved in 68%, 48%, and 22% of the patients at 1, 5, and 10 years, respectively. The median time to the first seizure for those who experienced seizure recurrence after surgery was 39 weeks (IQR 11–355 weeks). Anatomical hemispherectomy, as compared to functional hemispherectomy, was independently associated with a longer time to postoperative seizure recurrence (HR 0.078, p = 0.03). There was no statistically significant difference in postoperative seizure recurrence between patients with complete hemispherectomy and those who had less-than-hemispheric surgery. Following surgery, 68% of the patients could ambulate and 84% could speak regardless of operative intervention.


A large proportion of RE patients will have seizure relapse after surgery, though patients with anatomical hemispherectomies may have a longer time to postoperative seizure recurrence. Overall, the long-term data in this study suggest that hemispheric surgery can be seen as palliative treatment for seizures rather than a cure for RE.

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Kristian Aquilina, Catherine Hobbs, Shobha Cherian, Alexander Tucker, Helen Porter, Andrew Whitelaw, and Marianne Thoresen


The combination of intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) and posthemorrhagic ventricular dilation (PHVD) remains an important cause of disability in children surviving prematurity. Currently, there is no clear agreement on the management of neonatal IVH, apart from the eventual insertion of a shunt to control PHVD. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) shunts are associated with a relatively high complication rate in this population. The development of new treatment options requires greater understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms of IVH and PHVD, as well as an opportunity to monitor closely their effects on the immature brain. The authors have developed a neonatal large animal model of IVH with long-term survival, allowing the full development of PHVD.


Fourteen piglets that were 3 to 24 hours old were randomized to receive slow injections of autologous blood, autologous blood with elevated hematocrit, or artificial CSF after induction of general anesthesia. A fourth group served as controls. All animals underwent surgery to form an artificial fontanelle at the bregma. Physiological parameters, including intracranial pressure and electroencephalography, were monitored during injection.


Serial cranial ultrasonography studies performed during the 23- to 44-day survival period demonstrated progressive ventricular dilation in the animals injected with blood. Ventricular volumes, measured with image analysis software, confirmed the highest dilation after injection of blood with an elevated hematocrit. Histological evaluation showed fibrosis in the basal subarachnoid space of hydrocephalic piglets.


This piglet model closely replicates human neonatal IVH and PHVD. It allows detailed physiological and ultrasonographic monitoring over a prolonged survival period. It is suitable for evaluation of noninvasive as well as surgical options in the management of IVH and PHVD.

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Jasmine A. T. DiCesare, Alexander M. Tucker, Irene Say, Kunal Patel, Todd H. Lanman, Frank J. Coufal, Justin Millard, Jeffrey E. Deckey, Siddharth Shetgeri, and Duncan Q. McBride

Cervical spondylosis is one of the most commonly treated conditions in neurosurgery. Increasingly, cervical disc replacement (CDR) has become an alternative to traditional arthrodesis, particularly when treating younger patients. Thus, surgeons continue to gain a greater understanding of short- and long-term complications of arthroplasty. Here, the authors present a series of 4 patients initially treated with Mobi-C artificial disc implants who developed postoperative neck pain. Dynamic imaging revealed segmental kyphosis at the level of the implant. All implants were locked in the flexion position, and all patients required reoperation. This is the first reported case series of symptomatic segmental kyphosis after CDR.