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Christopher S. Hong, Daniel M. Prevedello and J. Bradley Elder


Tubular brain retractors may improve access to deep-seated brain lesions while potentially reducing the risks of collateral neurological injury associated with standard microsurgical approaches. Here, microscope-assisted resection of lesions using tubular retractors is assessed to determine if it is superior to endoscope-assisted surgery due to the technological advancements associated with modern tubular ports and surgical microscopes.


Following institutional approval of the tubular port, data obtained from the initial 20 patients to undergo transportal resection of deep-seated brain lesions were analyzed in this study. The pathological entities of the resected tissues included metastatic tumors (8 patients), glioma (7), meningioma (1), neurocytoma (1), radiation necrosis (1), primitive neuroectodermal tumor (1), and hemangioblastoma (1). Surgery incorporated endoscopic (5 patients) or microscopic (15) assistance. The locations included the basal ganglia (11 patients), cerebellum (4), frontal lobe (2), temporal lobe (2), and parietal lobe (1). Cases were reviewed for neurological outcomes, extent of resection (EOR), and complications. Technical data for the port, surgical microscope, and endoscope were analyzed.


EOR was considered total in 14 (70%), near total (> 95%) in 4 (20%), and subtotal (< 90%) in 2 (10%) of 20 patients. Incomplete resection was associated with the basal ganglia location (p < 0.05) and use of the endoscope (p < 0.002). Four of 5 (80%) endoscope-assisted cases were near-total (2) or subtotal (2) resection. Histopathological diagnosis, presenting neurological symptoms, and demographics were not associated with EOR. Complication rates were low and similar between groups.


Initial experience with tubular retractors favors use of the microscope rather than the endoscope due to a wider and 3D field of view. Improved microscope optics and tubular retractor design allows for binocular vision with improved lighting for the resection of deep-seated brain lesions.

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Shuyu Hao, Christopher S. Hong, Jie Feng, Chunzhang Yang, Prashant Chittiboina, Junting Zhang and Zhengping Zhuang

Maffucci syndrome is a rare disease characterized by multiple enchondromas and soft-tissue hemangiomas. Additionally, neuroendocrine tumors including pituitary adenomas have been described in these patients. The underlying genetic etiology lies in somatic mosaicism of mutations in isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 (IDH1) or isocitrate dehydrogenase 2 (IDH2). This report describes a patient with Maffucci syndrome who presented with intracranial tumors of the skull base and suprasellar region. The patient underwent resection of both intracranial tumors, revealing histopathological diagnoses of chondrosarcoma and pituitary adenoma. DNA sequencing of the tumors was performed to identify common IDH1/2 mutations. Clinical, radiological, and biochemical assessments were performed. Genotypic studies used standard Sanger sequencing in conjunction with a target-specific peptide nucleic acid to detect IDH1 mutations in tumor tissues. DNA sequencing demonstrated identical IDH1 mutations (c.394C > T) in both tumors.

To the authors’ knowledge, this report provides the first genetic evidence for the inclusion of pituitary adenomas among tumors characterizing Maffucci syndrome. In patients who are newly diagnosed with Maffucci syndrome, it is appropriate to monitor for development of pituitary pathology and neuroendocrine dysfunction.

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Jason K. Hsieh, Christopher S. Hong, Sunil Manjila, Mark L. Cohen, Simon Lo, Lisa Rogers and Andrew E. Sloan

The authors present the case of a primary gliosarcoma with an isocitrate dehydrogenase-1 (IDH1) mutation. A 75-year-old man presented with a 3-day history of multiple focal seizures and was found on MRI to have a 2.2-cm left parietal enhancing mass lesion. Brain MRI for tremor performed 8 years prior to this presentation was normal. En bloc resection revealed a high-grade glioma with sarcomatous components that was immunoreactive for the R132H variant of IDH1 by antibody. Gliosarcoma is a rare variant of glioblastoma that arises most frequently as a primary tumor, and has equal or worse survival and an increased propensity for extracranial metastases compared with other Grade 4 gliomas. In contrast, isocitrate dehydrogenase-1 and -2 mutations are associated with low-grade gliomas with increased survival and less commonly with glioblastoma. To the authors' knowledge, there has been only 1 other published report of a primary gliosarcoma carrying an isocitrate dehydrogenase mutation. This rare genetic-histological combination highlights potential differences between glioblastoma and gliosarcoma and may warrant additional study.