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Ching-Chung Ko, Tai-Yuan Chen, Sher-Wei Lim, Yu-Ting Kuo, Te-Chang Wu and Jeon-Hor Chen

OBJECTIVE

A subset of benign, nonfunctioning pituitary macroadenomas (NFMAs) has been shown to undergo early progression/recurrence (P/R) during the first years after surgical resection. The aim of this study was to determine preoperative MR imaging features for the prediction of P/R in benign solid NFMAs, with emphasis on apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values.

METHODS

We retrospectively investigated the preoperative MR imaging features for the prediction of P/R in benign solid NFMAs. Only the patients who had undergone preoperative MRI and postoperative MRI follow-ups for more than 1 year (at least every 6–12 months) were included. From November 2010 to December 2016, a total of 30 patients diagnosed with benign solid NFMAs were included (median follow-up time 45 months), and 19 (63.3%) patients had P/R (median time to P/R 24 months).

RESULTS

Benign solid NFMAs with cavernous sinus invasion, failed chiasmatic decompression, large tumor height and tumor volume, high diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) signal, and lower ADC values/ratios were significantly associated with P/R (p < 0.05). The cutoff points of ADC value and ADC ratio for prediction of P/R are 0.77 × 10−3 mm2/sec and 1.01, respectively, with area under the curve (AUC) values (0.9 and 0.91) (p < 0.01). In multivariate Cox proportional hazards analysis, low ADC value (< 0.77 × 10−3 mm2/sec) is a high-risk factor of P/R (p < 0.05) with a hazard ratio of 14.07.

CONCLUSIONS

Benign solid NFMAs with low ADC values/ratios are at a significantly increased risk of P/R, and aggressive treatments accompanied by close follow-up with imaging studies should be considered.

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Ching-Chang Chen, Peng-Wei Hsu, Shih-Tseng Lee, Chen-Nen Chang, Kuo-Chen Wei, Chieh-Tsai Wu, Yung-Hsin Hsu, Tzu-Kang Lin, Sai-Cheung Lee and Yin-Cheng Huang

Object

Liver cirrhosis was identified as an independent predictor of poor outcomes in patients suffering trauma and in those undergoing major surgeries. The aim of this study was to report the authors' experiences treating patients with cirrhosis who undergo brain surgeries.

Methods

Between 2004 and 2009, 121 consecutive patients with cirrhosis underwent 144 brain procedures. Patients were categorized as Child-Turcotte-Pugh (referred to as “Child”) Class A, B, or C. The patient profiles, including the severity of cirrhosis, reason for surgery, complications, and prognosis factors, were analyzed.

Results

In this retrospective study, the overall surgical complication rate for patients with cirrhosis was 52.1% and the mortality rate was 24.3%. For patients with acute traumatic brain injury (TBI), the complication, rebleeding, and mortality rates reached 84.4%, 68.8%, and 37.5%, respectively. Surgery for TBI was a significant risk factor for postoperative complications (p = 0.0002) and postoperative hemorrhage (p < 0.0001). Otherwise, according to the Child classification, the complication rate increased in a stepwise fashion from 38.7% to 60% to 84.2%, the rebleeding rate from 29.3% to 48.0% to 63.2%, and the mortality rate from 5.3% to 38% to 63.2% for Child A, B, and C, respectively. The Child classification was associated with higher risk of complications—Child B vs A OR 2.84 (95% CI 1.28–6.29), Child C vs A OR 5.39 (95% CI 1.32–22.02). It was also associated with risk of death—Child C vs A OR 30.43 (95% CI 7.71–120.02), Child B vs A OR 10.88 (95% CI 3.42–34.63).

Conclusions

Liver cirrhosis is a poor comorbidity factor for brain surgery. The authors' results suggest that the Child classification used independently is a poor prognostic factor; in addition, grave outcomes were observed in patients with TBI.

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Tsung-Ying Yu, Chao-Hung Chen, Man-Wei Hua, Chiao-Chin Lee and Dueng-Yuan Hueng

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Chang-Po Kuo, Li-Li Wen, Chun-Mei Chen, Billy Huh, Chen-Hwan Cherng, Chih-Shung Wong, Wen-Jinn Liaw, Chun-Chang Yeh, Bo-Feng Lin and Ching-Tang Wu

Object

Baicalein has been shown to offer neuroprotection in the ischemic brain, but its effect in subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is unknown. The authors used a double-hemorrhage model to study the role of early baicalein treatment in SAH.

Methods

Subarachnoid hemorrhage was induced in male Wistar rats through a repeat injection of autologous blood at a 48-hour interval. Rats subjected or not subjected to SAH received a 30-mg/kg baicalein injection 3 hours after SAH and daily for 6 consecutive days, and results were compared with those obtained in vehicle-treated control rats. Mortality of the rats was recorded. Neurological outcome was assessed daily. Cerebrospinal fluid dialysates were collected and examined for glutamate concentrations. Cerebral vasospasm (CVS), brain water content, neuron variability, expression of glutamate transporter–1 (GLT-1), immunoreactivity of astrocyte, and level of malondialdehyde, activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase in brain tissues content were determined on post-SAH Day 7.

Results

Mortality rate, neuronal degeneration, brain water content, and CVS were decreased and neurological function improved in the baicalein-treated rats. Baicalein increased astrocyte activity and preserved GLT-1, which attenuated the glutamate surge after SAH. Baicalein also provided antioxidative stress by preserving activities of SOD and catalase and decreased malondialdehydelevel after SAH. The glutamate, body weight, neurological scores, and glial fibrillary acidic protein activity were significantly correlated. The CVS was correlated with neuronal degeneration, and GLT-1 was correlated with oxidative stress.

Conclusions

Early baicalein treatment attenuated CVS and limited neurological injury following SAH. These data may indicate clinical utility for baicalein as an adjunct therapy to reduce brain injury and improve patient outcomes.

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Ching-Chang Chen, Shao-Wei Chen, Po-Hsun Tu, Yin-Cheng Huang, Zhuo-Hao Liu, Alvin Yi-Chou Wang, Shih-Tseng Lee, Tien-Hsing Chen, Chi-Tung Cheng, Shang-Yu Wang and An-Hsun Chou

OBJECTIVE

Burr hole craniostomy is an effective and simple procedure for treating chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH). However, the surgical outcomes and recurrence of CSDH in patients with liver cirrhosis (LC) remain unknown.

METHODS

A nationwide population-based cohort study was retrospectively conducted using data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. The study included 29,163 patients who underwent first-time craniostomy for CSDH removal between January 1, 2001, and December 31, 2013. In total, 1223 patients with LC and 2446 matched non-LC control patients were eligible for analysis. All-cause mortality, surgical complications, repeat craniostomy, extended craniotomy, and long-term medical costs were analyzed.

RESULTS

The in-hospital mortality rate (8.7% vs 3.1% for patients with LC and non-LC patients, respectively), frequency of hospital admission, length of ICU stay, number of blood transfusions, and medical expenditures of patients with LC who underwent craniostomy for CSDH were considerably higher than those of non-LC control patients. Patients with LC tended to require an extended craniotomy to remove subdural hematomas in the hospital or during long-term follow-up. The surgical outcome worsened with an increase in the severity of LC.

CONCLUSIONS

Even for simple procedures following minor head trauma, LC remains a serious comorbidity with a poor prognosis.

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Po-Chuan Hsieh, Yi-Ming Wu, Alvin Yi-Chou Wang, Ching-Chang Chen, Chien-Hung Chang, Shy-Chyi Chin, Tai-Wei Erich Wu, Chieh-Tsai Wu and Shih-Tseng Lee

OBJECTIVE

Diverse treatment results are observed in patients with poor-grade aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH). Significant initial perfusion compromise is thought to predict a worse treatment outcome, but this has scant support in the literature. In this cohort study, the authors correlate the treatment outcomes with a novel poor-outcome imaging predictor representing impaired cerebral perfusion on initial CT angiography (CTA).

METHODS

The authors reviewed the treatment results of 148 patients with poor-grade aSAH treated at a single tertiary referral center between 2007 and 2016. Patients with the “venous delay” phenomenon on initial CTA were identified. The outcome assessments used the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) at the 3rd month after aSAH. Factors that may have had an impact on outcome were retrospectively analyzed.

RESULTS

Compared with previously identified outcome predictors, the venous delay phenomenon on initial CTA was found to have the strongest correlation with posttreatment outcomes on both univariable (p < 0.0001) and multivariable analysis (OR 4.480, 95% CI 1.565–12.826; p = 0.0052). Older age and a higher Hunt and Hess grade at presentation were other factors that were associated with poor outcome, defined as an mRS score of 3 to 6.

CONCLUSIONS

The venous delay phenomenon on initial CTA can serve as an imaging predictor for worse functional outcome and may aid in decision making when treating patients with poor-grade aSAH.

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Li-Fu Chen, Tsung-Hsi Tu, Yu-Chun Chen, Jau-Ching Wu, Peng-Yuan Chang, Laura Liu, Wen-Cheng Huang, Su-Shun Lo and Henrich Cheng

OBJECTIVE

This study aimed to estimate the risk of spinal cord injury (SCI) in patients with cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM) with and without ossification of posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL). Also, the study compared the incidence rates of SCI in patients who were managed surgically and conservatively.

METHODS

This retrospective cohort study covering 15 years analyzed the incidence of SCI in patients with CSM. All patients, identified from the National Health Insurance Research Database, were hospitalized with the diagnosis of CSM and followed up during the study period. These patients with CSM were categorized into 4 groups according to whether they had OPLL or not and whether they received surgery or not: 1) surgically managed CSM without OPLL; 2) conservatively managed CSM without OPLL; 3) surgically managed CSM with OPLL; and 4) conservatively managed CSM with OPLL. The incidence rates of subsequent SCI in each group during follow-up were then compared. Kaplan-Meier and Cox regression analyses were performed to compare the risk of SCI between the groups.

RESULTS

Between January 1, 1999, and December 31, 2013, there were 17,258 patients with CSM who were followed up for 89,003.78 person-years. The overall incidence of SCI in these patients with CSM was 2.022 per 1000 person-years. Patients who had CSM with OPLL and were conservatively managed had the highest incidence of SCI, at 4.11 per 1000 person-years. Patients who had CSM with OPLL and were surgically managed had a lower incidence of SCI, at 3.69 per 1000 person-years. Patients who had CSM without OPLL and were conservatively managed had an even lower incidence of SCI, at 2.41 per 1000 person-years. Patients who had CSM without OPLL and were surgically managed had the lowest incidence of SCI, at 1.31 per 1000 person-years. The Cox regression model demonstrated that SCIs are significantly more likely to happen in male patients and in those with OPLL (HR 2.00 and 2.24, p < 0.001 and p = 0.007, respectively). Surgery could significantly lower the risk for approximately 50% of patients (HR 0.52, p < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS

Patients with CSM had an overall incidence rate of SCI at approximately 0.2% per year. Male sex, the coexistence of OPLL, and conservative management are twice as likely to be associated with subsequent SCI. Surgery is therefore suggested for male patients with CSM who also have OPLL.

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Mun-Chun Yeap, Ching-Chang Chen, Zhuo-Hao Liu, Po-Chuan Hsieh, Cheng-Chi Lee, Yu-Tse Liu, Alvin Yi-Chou Wang, Yin-Cheng Huang, Kuo-Chen Wei, Chieh-Tsai Wu and Po-Hsun Tu

OBJECTIVE

Cranioplasty is a relatively simple and less invasive intervention, but it is associated with a high incidence of postoperative seizures. The incidence of, and the risk factors for, such seizures and the effect of prophylactic antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) have not been well studied. The authors’ aim was to evaluate the risk factors that predispose patients to postcranioplasty seizures and to examine the role of seizure prophylaxis in cranioplasty.

METHODS

The records of patients who had undergone cranioplasty at the authors’ medical center between 2009 and 2014 with at last 2 years of follow-up were retrospectively reviewed. Demographic and clinical characteristics, the occurrence of postoperative seizures, and postoperative complications were analyzed.

RESULTS

Among the 583 patients eligible for inclusion in the study, 247 had preexisting seizures or used AEDs before the cranioplasty and 336 had no seizures prior to cranioplasty. Of these 336 patients, 89 (26.5%) had new-onset seizures following cranioplasty. Prophylactic AEDs were administered to 56 patients for 1 week after cranioplasty. No early seizures occurred in these patients, and this finding was statistically significant (p = 0.012). Liver cirrhosis, intraoperative blood loss, and shunt-dependent hydrocephalus were risk factors for postcranioplasty seizures in the multivariable analysis.

CONCLUSIONS

Cranioplasty is associated with a high incidence of postoperative seizures. The prophylactic use of AEDs can reduce the occurrence of early seizures.