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Open access

David S. Hersh, Katherine N. Sanford, and Frederick A. Boop

Described by Dandy in 1921, the posterior interhemispheric transcallosal approach provides an operative corridor to the pineal region, posterior third ventricle, and upper midbrain. Intervenous-interforniceal and paravenous-interforniceal variants have been utilized for midline and paramidline pathology, respectively. The intervenous-interforniceal variant capitalizes on the natural separation of the internal cerebral veins, which are found medial to the forniceal crura at this level, to provide a safe corridor to the tumor while minimizing the risk of injury to the fornices. Here, the authors describe a posterior interhemispheric transcallosal approach using the intervenous-interforniceal variant for resection of a periaqueductal pilocytic astrocytoma.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/mtQKEXEveTg.

Open access

David S. Hersh, William A. Lambert, Markus J. Bookland, and Jonathan E. Martin

Surgical options for metopic craniosynostosis include the traditional open approach or a minimally invasive approach that typically involves an endoscopy-assisted strip craniectomy. The minimally invasive approach has been associated with less blood loss and operative time, a lower transfusion rate, and a shorter length of stay. Additionally, it is more cost-effective than open reconstruction, despite the need for a postoperative cranial orthosis and multiple follow-up visits. The authors describe a variation of the minimally invasive approach using a lighted retractor to perform a strip craniectomy of the metopic suture in a 2-month-old patient with metopic craniosynostosis.

The video can be found here: https://vimeo.com/511237503.

Open access

David S. Hersh, Katherine N. Sanford, Kenneth Moore, and Frederick A. Boop

Dorsally exophytic brainstem tumors arise from within the brainstem itself. As the tumor grows, it pulls eloquent tissue with it, resulting in a shape that is analogous to the sides of a volcano. Rather than a resection that is flush with the brainstem being performed, this functional tissue on the lateral edges of the tumor must be identified and preserved in order to avoid postoperative deficits. The authors describe a midline, suboccipital approach with the use of intraoperative direct stimulation to identify and preserve functional tissue innervating the palate during the resection of a dorsally exophytic medullary tumor.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/qbk2DvInO8o.

Restricted access

David S. Hersh, Jonathan Chun, Howard L. Weiner, Steven Pulitzer, Henry Rusinek, Jonathan Roth, Orrin Devinsky, and Sarah S. Milla

Object

In patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), the tuber-to-brain proportion (TBP) is a marker of seizure severity and cognitive function. However, few studies have quantified the TBP. Furthermore, authors of these studies have measured the TBP at only a single time point, despite the fact that tuber cells were found to express proliferation markers, suggesting that they may be dynamic lesions. Authors of the present study used a semi-automated tuber segmentation program to determine whether the TBP changes over time.

Methods

Axial FLAIR MR images were retrospectively identified for patients with TSC who had undergone imaging at the authors' institution between February 1998 and June 2009. Using FireVoxel software, the TBP was measured for each patient at a minimum interval of 2 years.

Results

Twelve patients meeting the study inclusion criteria were identified. The mean TBP was 1.88% (range 0.38%–3.70%). Eight patients demonstrated minimal changes and 3 patients demonstrated small increases in TBP. The remaining patient exhibited a decrease of 1.00%, which correlated with a visible decrease in the size of 2 cerebellar lesions.

Conclusions

Semi-automated brain segmentation is a valuable tool in the longitudinal study of tubers. A subset of patients with TSC, particularly those with cerebellar lesions, may exhibit changes in the TBP over time.

Full access

David S. Hersh, Julie E. Hoover-Fong, Natalie Beck, Amir H. Dorafshar, and Edward S. Ahn

OBJECTIVE

Recent reports have described early endoscopic suturectomy as a treatment option for patients with syndromic craniosynostosis, but such patients often require subsequent calvarial remodeling. The authors describe their experience with this patient population and seek to identify predictors of sufficiency of endoscopic surgery alone.

METHODS

The medical records of patients with syndromic craniosynostosis who underwent endoscopic repair were retrospectively reviewed. Demographic data, operative details, and follow-up data were collected.

RESULTS

A total of 6 patients with syndromic craniosynostosis underwent endoscopic surgery followed by helmet therapy during the study period. Of these, 3 patients were male. The involved syndromes included Crouzon, Pfeiffer, Jackson-Weiss, Muenke, Saethre-Chotzen, and craniosynostosis-3 (n = 1 each). The patients underwent endoscopic surgery at a median age of 2.1 months (range 0.9–4.1 months). The median estimated blood loss was 30 ml (range 20–100 ml), with 2 patients requiring a transfusion. The median length of stay in the hospital was 1.5 days (range 1–4 days), and the median follow-up was 29.0 months (range 16.8–81.7 months), with 1 patient (16.7%) requiring an open revision. Three patients (50%) were classified as Whitaker Category I at the last follow-up. The patients for whom additional open surgery was performed or recommended (Whitaker Category IV) were the oldest patients in the cohort, ranging from 2.6 to 4.1 months at the time of surgery.

CONCLUSIONS

This series demonstrates that endoscopic surgery can be sufficient to treat syndromic craniosynostosis without subsequent open calvarial remodeling over a median follow-up period of at least 2 years. The findings suggest that younger age at the time of endoscopic surgery may be an important factor in determining the sufficiency of this procedure. Even among patients who require subsequent open calvarial remodeling, early endoscopic surgery may allow for growth and development of the brain and skull while delaying the need for open remodeling until the patient is older and can better tolerate the procedure.

Free access

David S. Hersh, Rajiv R. Iyer, Tomas Garzon-Muvdi, Ann Liu, George I. Jallo, and Mari L. Groves

OBJECTIVE

Spinal deformity has become a well-recognized complication of intramedullary spinal cord tumor (IMSCT) resection. In particular, laminectomy can result in biomechanical instability caused by loss of the posterior tension band. Therefore, laminoplasty has been proposed as an alternative to laminectomy. Here, the authors describe the largest current series of pediatric patients who have undergone laminoplasty for IMSCT resection and investigate the need for surgical fusion after both laminectomy and laminoplasty.

METHODS

The medical records of pediatric patients who underwent resection of an IMSCT at a single institution between November 2003 and May 2014 were reviewed retrospectively. Demographic, clinical, radiological, surgical, histopathological, and follow-up data were collected.

RESULTS

Sixty-six consecutive patients underwent resection of an IMSCT during the study period. Forty-three (65%) patients were male. The patients had a median age of 12.9 years (interquartile range [IQR] 7.2–16.5 years) at the time of surgery. Patients typically presented with a tumor that involved the cervical and/or thoracic spine. Nineteen (29%) patients underwent laminectomy, and 47 (71%) patients underwent laminoplasty. Patients in each cohort had a similar rate of postoperative deformity. Overall, 10 (15%) patients required instrumented spinal fusion for spinal deformity. Four patients required revision of the primary fusion.

CONCLUSIONS

These findings show that among pediatric patients with an IMSCT, postoperative surgical fusion rates remain high, even after laminoplasty. Known risk factors, such as the age of the patient, location of the tumor, and the number of involved levels, might play a larger role than replacement of the laminae in determining the rate of surgical fusion after IMSCT resection.

Free access

Sebastian P. Norrdahl, Tamekia L. Jones, Pooja Dave, David S. Hersh, Brandy Vaughn, and Paul Klimo Jr.

OBJECTIVE

In pediatric patients, the development of a postoperative pseudomeningocele after an elective craniotomy is not unusual. Most will resolve with time, but some may require intervention. In this study, the authors analyzed patients who required intervention for a postoperative pseudomeningocele following an elective craniotomy or craniectomy and identified factors associated with the need for intervention.

METHODS

An institutional operative database of elective craniotomies and craniectomies was queried to identify all surgeries associated with development of a postoperative pseudomeningocele from January 1, 2010, to December 31, 2017. Demographic and surgical data were collected, as were details regarding postoperative events and interventions during either the initial admission or upon readmission. A bivariate analysis was performed to compare patients who underwent observation with those who required intervention.

RESULTS

Following 1648 elective craniotomies or craniectomies, 84 (5.1%) clinically significant pseudomeningoceles were identified in 82 unique patients. Of these, 58 (69%) of the pseudomeningoceles were diagnosed during the index admission (8 of which persisted and resulted in readmission), and 26 (31%) were diagnosed upon readmission. Forty-nine patients (59.8% of those with a pseudomeningocele) required one or more interventions, such as lumbar puncture(s), lumbar drain placement, wound exploration, or shunt placement or revision. Only race (p < 0.01) and duraplasty (p = 0.03, OR 3.0) were associated with the need for pseudomeningocele treatment.

CONCLUSIONS

Clinically relevant pseudomeningoceles developed in 5% of patients undergoing an elective craniotomy, with 60% of these pseudomeningoceles needing some form of intervention. The need for intervention was associated with race and whether a duraplasty was performed.

Full access

Nickalus R. Khan, Kenneth Moore, Jaafar Basma, David S. Hersh, Asim F. Choudhri, Brandy Vaughn, and Paul Klimo Jr.

OBJECTIVE

An ischemic stroke following an elective craniotomy in a child is perceived to be a rare event. However, to date there are few papers on this topic. The purpose of this study was to investigate the occurrence of stroke following elective intracranial surgery at a children’s hospital.

METHODS

The authors performed a retrospective review of all patients who developed a perioperative stroke following an elective craniotomy from 2010 through 2017. Data were collected using an institutional database that contained demographic, medical, radiological, and outcome variables.

RESULTS

A total of 1591 elective craniotomies were performed at the authors’ institution during the study period. Of these, 28 (1.8%) were followed by a perioperative stroke. Radiographic diagnosis of the infarction occurred at a median of 1.7 days (range 0–9 days) from the time of surgery, and neurological deficits were apparent within 24 hours of surgery in 18 patients (62.5%). Infarcts tended to occur adjacent to tumor resection sites (86% of cases), and in a unilateral (89%), unifocal (93%), and supratentorial (93%) location. Overall, 11 (39.3%) strokes were due to a perforating artery, 10 (35.7%) were due to a large vessel, 4 (14.3%) were venous, and 3 (10.7%) were related to hypoperfusion or embolic causes. Intraoperative MRI (iMRI) was used in 11 of the 28 cases, and 6 (55%) infarcts were not detected, all of which were deep.

CONCLUSIONS

The incidence of stroke following an elective craniotomy is low, with nearly all cases (86%) occurring after tumor resection. Perforator infarcts were most common but may be missed on iMRI.

Restricted access

David S. Hersh, Rahul Kumar, Paul Klimo Jr., Markus Bookland, and Jonathan E. Martin

OBJECTIVE

Late failure is a well-documented complication of cerebrospinal fluid shunt placement and, less commonly, endoscopic third ventriculostomy (ETV). However, standards regarding the frequency of clinical and radiological follow-up in these patients have not been defined. Here, the authors report on their survey of surgeons at sites for the Hydrocephalus Clinical Research Network (HCRN) or its implementation/quality improvement arm (HCRNq) to provide a cross-sectional overview of practice patterns.

METHODS

A 24-question survey was developed using the Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) platform and was distributed to the 138 pediatric neurosurgeons across 39 centers who participate in the HCRN or HCRNq. Survey questions were organized into three sections: 1) Demographics (5 questions), 2) Shunt Surveillance (12 questions), and 3) ETV Surveillance (7 questions).

RESULTS

A total of 122 complete responses were obtained, for an overall response rate of 88%. The majority of respondents have been in practice for more than 10 years (58%) and exclusively treat pediatric patients (79%). Most respondents consider hydrocephalus to have stabilized 1 month (21%) or 3 months (39%) after shunt surgery, and once stability is achieved, 72% then ask patients to return for routine clinical follow-up annually. Overall, 83% recommend lifelong clinical follow-up after shunt placement. Additionally, 75% obtain routine imaging studies in asymptomatic patients, although the specific imaging modality and frequency of imaging vary. The management of an asymptomatic increase in ventricle size or an asymptomatic catheter fracture also varies widely. Many respondents believe that hydrocephalus takes longer to stabilize after ETV than after shunt placement, reporting that they consider hydrocephalus to have stabilized 3 (28%), 6 (33%), or 12 (28%) months after an ETV. Although 68% of respondents have patients return annually for routine clinical follow-up after an ETV, only 56% recommend lifelong follow-up. The proportion of respondents who perform lifelong follow-up increases with greater practice experience (p = 0.01). Overall, 67% of respondents obtain routine imaging studies in asymptomatic patients after an ETV, with “rapid” MRI the study of choice for most respondents.

CONCLUSIONS

While there is a general consensus among pediatric neurosurgeons across North America that hydrocephalus patients should have long-term follow-up after shunt placement, radiological surveillance is characterized by considerable variety, as is follow-up after an ETV. Future work should focus on evaluating whether any one of these surveillance protocols is associated with improved outcomes.

Full access

Elizabeth Le, Bizhan Aarabi, David S. Hersh, Kathirkamanthan Shanmuganathan, Cara Diaz, Jennifer Massetti, and Noori Akhtar-Danesh

OBJECT

Studies of preclinical spinal cord injury (SCI) in rodents indicate that expansion of intramedullary lesions (IMLs) seen on MR images may be amenable to neuroprotection. In patients with subaxial SCI and motor-complete American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) Impairment Scale (AIS) Grade A or B, IML expansion has been shown to be approximately 900 μm/hour. In this study, the authors investigated IML expansion in a cohort of patients with subaxial SCI and AIS Grade A, B, C, or D.

METHODS

Seventy-eight patients who had at least 2 MRI scans within 6 days of SCI were enrolled. Data were analyzed by regression analysis.

RESULTS

In this cohort, the mean age was 45.3 years (SD 18.3 years), 73 patients were injured in a motor vehicle crash, from a fall, or in sport activities, and 77% of them were men. The mean Injury Severity Score (ISS) was 26.7 (SD 16.7), and the AIS grade was A in 23 patients, B in 7, C in 7, and D in 41. The mechanism of injury was distraction in 26 patients, compression in 22, disc/osteophyte complex in 29, and Chance fracture in 1. The mean time between injury onset and the first MRI scan (Interval 1) was 10 hours (SD 8.7 hours), and the mean time to the second MRI scan (Interval 2) was 60 hours (SD 29.6 hours). The mean IML lengths of the first and second MR images were 38.8 mm (SD 20.4 mm) and 51 mm (SD 36.5 mm), respectively. The mean time from the first to the second MRI scan (Interval 3) was 49.9 hours (SD 28.4 hours), and the difference in IML lengths was 12.6 mm (SD 20.7 mm), reflecting an expansion rate of 366 μm/ hour (SD 710 μm/hour). IML expansion in patients with AIS Grades A and B was 918 μm/hour (SD 828 μm/hour), and for those with AIS Grades C and D, it was 21 μm/hour (SD 304 μm/hour). Univariate analysis indicated that AIS Grade A or B versus Grades C or D (p < 0.0001), traction (p= 0.0005), injury morphology (p < 0.005), the surgical approach (p= 0.009), vertebral artery injury (p= 0.02), age (p < 0.05), ISS (p < 0.05), ASIA motor score (p < 0.05), and time to decompression (p < 0.05) were all predictors of lesion expansion. In multiple regression analysis, however, the sole determinant of IML expansion was AIS grade (p < 0.005).

CONCLUSIONS

After traumatic subaxial cervical spine or spinal cord injury, patients with motor-complete injury (AIS Grade A or B) had a significantly higher rate of IML expansion than those with motor-incomplete injury (AIS Grade C or D).