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Ann Marie Flannery

Introduction

Acquired skull defects are common as a result of trauma infection and calvarial expansion among other causes. The techniques available to repair these defects have included a variety of foreign body implants or bone grafting from proximal or distant sites. Tissue engineering using bone morphogenetic protein (rBMP) and an absorbable mesh scaffold offers a unique opportunity to fill defects with in situ osteogenesis.

Methods

Bony calvarial defects in 19 children ranging in age from 11 months to 15 years were repaired using rBMP and a collagen scaffold plus a synthetic hydroxyapatite ceramic in a granular or matrix form. The construct is held with poly D,L-lactide acid resorbable mesh. The skull defects were a result of trauma (n = 5) craniotomy for tumor (n = 2), congenital absence (n = 1), infection (n = 4), and calvarial expansion for synostosis (n = 7). The reconstruction technique varied with the size and geometry of the defect. The defects repaired ranged from 10 to 60 cm2. Results of the repair were judged by physical exam and 3D computed tomography.

Results

In 18 patients followed for at least 6 months, the calvarium was completely ossified in 15 cases and had a small residual defect (2 cm2) in 3 from early in the series. Two surgeries were required to completely reconstruct a bifrontal bone flap.

Conclusion

BMP shows promise for repairing significant calvarial defects by promoting the growth of the patient's own bone in situ osteogenesis, thereby avoiding the need for foreign body implants or bone grafts from other sites.

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Ann Marie Flannery and Laura Mitchell

This clinical systematic review of and evidence-based guidelines for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus were developed by a physician volunteer task force. They are provided as an educational tool based on an assessment of current scientific and clinical information as well as accepted approaches to treatment. They are not intended to be a fixed protocol, because some patients may require more or less treatment.

In Part 1, the authors introduce the reader to the complex topic of hydrocephalus and the lack of consensus on its appropriate treatment. The authors describe the development of the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Systematic Review and Evidence-Based Guidelines Task Force charged with reviewing the literature and recommending treatments for hydrocephalus, and they set out the basic methodology used throughout the specific topics covered in later chapters.

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Ann Marie Flannery, Ann-Christine Duhaime, Mandeep S. Tamber, and Joanna Kemp

Object

This systematic review was undertaken to answer the following question: Do technical adjuvants such as ventricular endoscopic placement, computer-assisted electromagnetic guidance, or ultrasound guidance improve ventricular shunt function and survival?

Methods

The US National Library of Medicine PubMed/MEDLINE database and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were queried using MeSH headings and key words specifically chosen to identify published articles detailing the use of cerebrospinal fluid shunts for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus. Articles meeting specific criteria that had been delineated a priori were then examined, and data were abstracted and compiled in evidentiary tables. These data were then analyzed by the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Systematic Review and Evidence-Based Guidelines Task Force to consider evidence-based treatment recommendations.

Results

The search yielded 163 abstracts, which were screened for potential relevance to the application of technical adjuvants in shunt placement. Fourteen articles were selected for full-text review. One additional article was selected during a review of literature citations. Eight of these articles were included in the final recommendations concerning the use of endoscopy, ultrasonography, and electromagnetic image guidance during shunt placement, whereas the remaining articles were excluded due to poor evidence or lack of relevance.

The evidence included 1 Class I, 1 Class II, and 6 Class III papers. An evidentiary table of relevant articles was created.

Conclusions

Recommendation: There is insufficient evidence to recommend the use of endoscopic guidance for routine ventricular catheter placement. Strength of Recommendation: Level I, high degree of clinical certainty.

Recommendation: The routine use of ultrasound-assisted catheter placement is an option. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear clinical certainty.

Recommendation: The routine use of computer-assisted electromagnetic (EM) navigation is an option. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear clinical certainty.

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Joanna Kemp, Ann Marie Flannery, Mandeep S. Tamber, and Ann-Christine Duhaime

Object

The objective of this guideline was to answer the following question: Do the entry point and position of the ventricular catheter have an effect on shunt function and survival?

Methods

Both the US National Library of Medicine/MEDLINE database and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were queried using MeSH headings and key words specifically chosen to identify published articles detailing the use of CSF shunts for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus. Articles meeting specific criteria that had been delineated a priori were then examined, and data were abstracted and compiled in evidentiary tables.

Results

The search yielded 184 abstracts, which were screened for potential relevance to the clinical question of the effect of ventricular catheter entry site on shunt survival. An initial review of the abstracts identified 14 papers that met the inclusion criteria, and these were recalled for full-text review. After review of these articles, only 4 were noted to be relevant for an analysis of the impact of entry point on shunt survival; an additional paper was retrieved during the review of full-text articles and was included as evidence to support the recommendation. The evidence included 1 Class II paper and 4 Class III papers. An evidentiary table was created including the relevant articles.

Conclusion

Recommendation: There is insufficient evidence to recommend the occipital versus frontal point of entry for the ventricular catheter; therefore, both entry points are options for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear degree of clinical certainty.

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David D. Limbrick Jr., Lissa C. Baird, Paul Klimo Jr., Jay Riva-Cambrin, and Ann Marie Flannery

Object

The objective of this systematic review was to examine the existing literature comparing CSF shunts and endoscopic third ventriculostomy (ETV) for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus and to make evidence-based recommendations regarding the selection of surgical technique for this condition.

Methods

Both the US National Library of Medicine and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were queried using MeSH headings and key words specifically chosen to identify published articles detailing the use of CSF shunts and ETV for the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus. Articles meeting specific criteria that had been determined a priori were examined, and data were abstracted and compiled in evidentiary tables. These data were then analyzed by the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Systematic Review and Evidence-Based Guidelines Task Force to consider treatment recommendations based on the evidence.

Results

Of the 122 articles identified using optimized search parameters, 52 were recalled for full-text review. One additional article, originally not retrieved in the search, was also reviewed. Fourteen articles met all study criteria and contained comparative data on CSF shunts and ETV. In total, 6 articles (1 Class II and 5 Class III) were accepted for inclusion in the evidentiary table; 8 articles were excluded for various reasons. The tabulated evidence supported the evaluation of CSF shunts versus ETV.

Conclusions

Cerebrospinal fluid shunts and ETV demonstrated equivalent outcomes in the clinical etiologies studied.

Recommendation: Both CSF shunts and ETV are options in the treatment of pediatric hydrocephalus. Strength of Recommendation: Level II, moderate clinical certainty.

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Dimitrios C. Nikas, Alexander F. Post, Asim F. Choudhri, Catherine A. Mazzola, Laura Mitchell, and Ann Marie Flannery

Object

The objective of this systematic review is to answer the following question: Does ventricle size after treatment have a predictive value in determining the effectiveness of surgical intervention in pediatric hydrocephalus?

Methods

The US National Library of Medicine PubMed/MEDLINE database and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were searched using MeSH headings and key words relevant to change in ventricle size after surgical intervention for hydrocephalus in children. An evidentiary table was assembled summarizing the studies and the quality of evidence (Classes I–III).

Results

Six articles satisfied inclusion criteria for the evidentiary tables for this part of the guidelines. All were Class III retrospective studies.

Conclusions

Recommendation: There is insufficient evidence to recommend a specific change in ventricle size as a measurement of the effective treatment of hydrocephalus and as a measurement of the timing and effectiveness of treatments including ventriculoperitoneal shunts and third ventriculostomies. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear clinical certainty.

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Paul Klimo Jr., Clinton J. Thompson, Lissa C. Baird, and Ann Marie Flannery

Object

The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to answer the following question: Are antibiotic-impregnated shunts (AISs) superior to standard shunts (SSs) at reducing the risk of shunt infection in pediatric patients with hydrocephalus?

Methods

Both the US National Library of Medicine PubMed/MEDLINE database and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were queried using MeSH headings and key words relevant to AIS use in children. Abstracts were reviewed, after which studies meeting the inclusion criteria were selected. An evidentiary table was assembled summarizing the studies and the quality of their evidence (Classes I–III). A meta-analysis was conducted using a random-effects model to calculate a cumulative estimate of treatment effect using risk ratio (RR). Heterogeneity was assessed using the chi-square and I2 statistics. Based on the quality of the literature and the result of the meta-analysis, a recommendation was rendered (Level I, II, or III).

Results

Six studies, all Class III, met our inclusion criteria. All but one study focused on a retrospective cohort and all but one were conducted at a single institution. Four of the studies failed to demonstrate a lowered infection rate with the use of an AIS. However, when the data from individual studies were pooled together, the infection rate in the AIS group was 5.5% compared with 8.6% in the SS group. Using a random-effects model, the cumulative RR was 0.51 (95% CI 0.29–0.89, p < 0.001), indicating that a shunt infection was 1.96 times more likely in patients who received an SS.

Conclusions

We recommend AIS tubing because of the associated lower risk of shunt infection compared to the use of conventional silicone hardware (quality of evidence: Class III; strength of recommendation: Level III).

Recommendation: Antibiotic-impregnated shunt (AIS) tubing may be associated with a lower risk of shunt infection compared with conventional silicone hardware and thus is an option for children who require placement of a shunt. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear degree of clinical certainty.

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Scott Y. Rahimi, Harshpal Singh, David J. Yeh, Ellen G. Shaver, Ann Marie Flannery, and Mark R. Lee

Object

Golf-related injuries constitute a common type of sports injury in the pediatric population. The increase in the frequency of these injuries is largely attributed to the increase in the popularity of golf and greater use of golf carts by children.

Methods

The purpose of this study was to investigate the mechanisms and complications associated with golfrelated injuries in the pediatric population and, by doing so, assist in the prevention of such injuries. We reviewed the charts of 2546 pediatric patients evaluated by the neurosurgery service at the authors' institution over a 6-year period. There were 64 cases of sports-related injuries. Of these, 15 (23%) were golf-related, making these injuries the second-largest group of sports-related injuries. Depressed skull fracture was the most common injury observed. Neurosurgical intervention was required in 33% of the cases. With rare exceptions, patients made good recoveries during a mean follow-up period of 22.2 months. One death occurred due to uncontrollable cerebral edema following a golf cart accident. One child required shunt placement and several revisions following an injury sustained from a golf ball.

Conclusions

Children should be advised on the proper use of golf equipment as a preventive measure to avoid these injuries. Precautionary guidelines and safety training guidelines should be established. The institution of a legal minimum age required to operate a golf cart should be considered.

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Mandeep S. Tamber, Paul Klimo Jr., Catherine A. Mazzola, and Ann Marie Flannery

Object

The objective of this systematic review was to answer the following question: What is the optimal treatment strategy for CSF shunt infection in pediatric patients with hydrocephalus?

Methods

The US National Library of Medicine and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were queried using MeSH headings and key words relevant to the objective of this systematic review. Abstracts were reviewed, after which studies meeting the inclusion criteria were selected and graded according to their quality of evidence (Classes I–III). Evidentiary tables were constructed that summarized pertinent study results, and based on the quality of the literature, recommendations were made (Levels I–III).

Results

A review and critical appraisal of 27 studies that met the inclusion criteria allowed for a recommendation for supplementation of antibiotic treatment using partial (externalization) or complete shunt hardware removal, with a moderate degree of clinical certainty. However, a recommendation regarding whether complete shunt removal is favored over partial shunt removal (that is, externalization) could not be made owing to severe methodological deficiencies in the existing literature. There is insufficient evidence to recommend the use of intrathecal antibiotic therapy as an adjunct to systemic antibiotic therapy in the management of routine CSF shunt infections. This also holds true for other clinical scenarios such as when an infected CSF shunt cannot be completely removed, when a shunt must be removed and immediately replaced in the face of ongoing CSF infection, or when the setting is ventricular shunt infection caused by specific organisms (for example, gram-negative bacteria).

Conclusions

Supplementation of antibiotic treatment with partial (externalization) or complete shunt hardware removal are options in the management of CSF shunt infection. There is insufficient evidence to recommend either shunt externalization or complete shunt removal as the preferred surgical strategy for the management of CSF shunt infection. Therefore, clinical judgment is required. In addition, there is insufficient evidence to recommend the combination of intrathecal and systemic antibiotics for patients with CSF shunt infection when the infected shunt hardware cannot be fully removed, when the shunt must be removed and immediately replaced, or when the CSF shunt infection is caused by specific organisms. The potential neurotoxicity of intrathecal antibiotic therapy may limit its routine use.

Recommendation: Supplementation of antibiotic treatment with partial (externalization) or with complete shunt hardware removal is an option in the management of CSF shunt infection. Strength of Recommendation: Level II, moderate degree of clinical certainty.

Recommendation: There is insufficient evidence to recommend either shunt externalization or complete shunt removal as a preferred surgical strategy for the management of CSF shunt infection. Therefore, clinical judgment is required. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear degree of clinical certainty.

Recommendation: There is insufficient evidence to recommend the combination of intrathecal and systemic antibiotics for patients with CSF shunt infection in whom the infected shunt hardware cannot be fully removed or must be removed and immediately replaced, or when the CSF shunt infection is caused by specific organisms. The potential neurotoxicity of intrathecal antibiotic therapy may limit its routine use. Strength of Recommendation: Level III, unclear degree of clinical certainty.