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Luigi Mariani, Benoit Schaller, Joachim Weis, Christoph Ozdoba and Rolf W. Seiler

✓ Esthesioneuroblastoma (olfactory neuroblastoma) is a rare, malignant neoplasm that typically arises in the nasal vault, invades adjacent tissues, and causes locoregional (cervical lymph nodes) and distant metastases. Only two cases of tumors arising in the sellar region that had the histological characteristics of esthesioneuroblastoma have been reported in the literature to date. The authors present the case of a 35-year-old woman with secondary amenorrhea and a rapidly growing tumor located in the adenohypophysis. After total removal of the lesion through a transseptal—transsphenoidal approach, the histological examination revealed an esthesioneuroblastoma Grade II/III according to Hyams. Considering the particular location of the lesion and the absence of residual tumor on postoperative magnetic resonance imaging, no adjuvant therapy was performed. The patient remained free from tumor recurrence 2 years postoperatively. Because all published cases of this esthestoneuroblastoma have been large neuroblastic tumors of the pituitary gland arising in middle-aged women, pituitary neuroblastoma might represent a rare, specific clinicopathological entity.

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Michael Reinert, Benoit Schaller, Hans Rudolf Widmer, Rolf Seiler and Ross Bullock

Object. Severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) imposes a huge metabolic load on brain tissue, which can be summarized initially as a state of hypermetabolism and hyperglycolysis. In experiments O2 consumption has been shown to increase early after trauma, especially in the presence of high lactate levels and forced O2 availability. In recent clinical studies the effect of increasing O2 availability on brain metabolism has been analyzed. By their nature, however, clinical trauma models suffer from a heterogeneous injury distribution. The aim of this study was to analyze, in a standardized diffuse brain injury model, the effect of increasing the fraction of inspired O2 on brain glucose and lactate levels, and to compare this effect with the metabolism of the noninjured sham-operated brain.

Methods. A diffuse severe TBI model developed by Foda and Maramarou, et al., in which a 420-g weight is dropped from a height of 2 m was used in this study. Forty-one male Wistar rats each weighing approximately 300 g were included. Anesthesized rats were monitored by placing a femoral arterial line for blood pressure and blood was drawn for a blood gas analysis. Two time periods were defined: Period A was defined as preinjury and Period B as postinjury. During Period B two levels of fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) were studied: air (FiO2 0.21) and oxygen (FiO2 1). Four groups were studied including sham-operated animals: air-air-sham (AAS); air-O2-sham (AOS); air-air-trauma (AAT); and air-O2-trauma (AOT). In six rats the effect of increasing the FiO2 on serum glucose and lactate was analyzed.

During Period B lactate values in the brain determined using microdialysis were significantly lower (p < 0.05) in the AOT group than in the AAT group and glucose values in the brain determined using microdialysis were significantly higher (p < 0.04). No differences were demonstrated in the other groups. Increasing the FiO2 had no significant effect on the serum levels of glucose and lactate.

Conclusions. Increasing the FiO2 influences dialysate glucose and lactate levels in injured brain tissue. Using an FiO2 of 1 influences brain metabolism in such a way that lactate is significantly reduced and glucose significantly increased. No changes in dialysate glucose and lactate values were found in the noninjured brain.

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Benoit Jenny, Nicolas Smoll, Yassine El Hassani, Shahan Momjian, Claudio Pollo, Christian M. Korff, Margitta Seeck and Karl Schaller


Like adults, many children suffering from intractable seizures benefit from surgical therapy. Although various reports indicate that early intervention may avoid severe developmental consequences often associated with intractable epilepsy, surgery is still considered a last option for many children. In this retrospective study, the authors aimed to determine whether pediatric epilepsy surgery, in particular during the first years of life, relates to measurable benefits.


Data from 78 patients (age range 5 months to 17 years) who underwent epilepsy surgery at the Geneva and Lausanne University Hospitals between 1997 and 2012 were reviewed retrospectively. Patients were dichotomized into 2 groups: infants (≤ 3 years of age, n = 19), and children/adolescents (4–17 years of age, n = 59). Compared with children/adolescents, infants more often had a diagnosis of dysplasia (37% vs 10%, respectively; p < 0.05, chi-square test).


The overall seizure-free rate was 76.9%, with 89.5% in infants and 72.9% in the children/adolescents group. Infants were 2.76 times as likely to achieve seizure-free status as children/adolescents. Postoperative antiepileptic medication was reduced in 67.9% of patients. Only 11.4% of the patients were taking more than 2 antiepileptic drugs after surgery, compared with 43% before surgery (p < 0.0001). The overall complication rate was 15.1% (6.4% transient hemiparesis), and no major complications or deaths occurred.


The data show a high seizure-free rate in children ≤ 3 years of age, despite a higher occurrence of dysplastic, potentially ill-defined lesions. Pediatric patients undergoing epilepsy surgery can expect a significant reduction in their need for medication. Given the excellent results in the infant group, prospective studies are warranted to determine whether age ≤ 3 years is a predictor for excellent surgical outcome.