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The abducens nerve

Anatomical variations in its course

Hilel Nathan, Georges Ouaknine and Isaac Z. Kosary

✓ The authors describe the origins and course of the sixth cranial nerve in 62 cadaver or autopsy cases and describe three patterns. In Pattern 1 the nerve originates and runs all its way as a single trunk. In Pattern 2 it originates as a single trunk, but splits into two branches in the subarachnoid space, while in Pattern 3 it originates as two separate trunks. In both Patterns 2 and 3 the trunks perforate the dura mater independently and enter the cavernous sinus by passing one above and the other below the petrosphenoidal ligament. In the sinus the two trunks fuse into a single trunk which then continues to the lateral rectus muscle. The practical neurological importance of these variations is discussed.

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Khalil Salame, Georges E. R. Ouaknine, Nissim Razon and Semion Rochkind

Object

Cage devices were introduced in spinal fusion to overcome the shortcomings of autograft, allograft, and biocompatible implants. The aim of this study was to assess the short-term results of anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) in which an interbody carbon fiber cage (CFC) and local osteophyte–derived bone graft were implanted.

Methods

A retrospective review was conducted of 100 consecutive patients treated by ACDF in which a CFC was packed with bone fragments obtained from osteophytes at the surgical site. Plain radiographs with dynamic lateral views obtained 1 year postoperatively were used to assess bone fusion, alignment of the cervical spine, and stability. Dynamic radiographs were also obtained at last follow up to determine whether loss of cervical alignment or collapse at the fused disc had occurred.

The mean follow-up period was 25 months. In all cases the cervical lordosis was maintained or corrected to different extents and disc height was restored. Solid fusion was achieved in 98% of the cases. There were no cage-related complications and no cases of cage failure.

Conclusions

The authors conclude that application of the CFC for ACDF is safe, effective, and technically feasible. Osteophytes resected during surgery may be a good alternative material for bone grafting in cage-assisted cervical interbody fusion.

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Isaac Z. Kosary, Isaac J. Shacked, Georges Ouaknine and Jackson Braham

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Khalil Salame, Yoram Segev, Dan M. Fliss and Georges E. Ouaknine

Posttraumatic cranio-orbital cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fistula is very rare. Diagnosis of these fistulas may be difficult, and it is possible that this complication of craniofacial injury is underdiagnosed. Early recognition and adequate treatment is of paramount importance to prevent hazardous complications. The authors report the case of a 20-year-old woman in whom a CSF leak developed through the medial canthus area of her eye after she sustained a mild sports-related injury. Clinical examination and chemical analysis of the fluid led to the correct diagnosis, and the leak was stopped with conservative treatment. It is proposed that a CSF leak through the eye be termed “oculorrhea” as compared with otorrhea and rhinorrhea. The mechanism of the fistula in this patient is discussed, as is the pertinent radiologically demonstrated anatomy and the mechanism of injury. Management and controversies are also discussed.

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Isaac Z. Kosary, Rina Tadmor, George Ouaknine and Jackson Braham

✓ The authors report the use of the water-soluble spinal contrast medium Dimer-X in 100 cases of suspected lumbar disc disease. It was particularly valuable in delineating small laterally-placed protrusions causing root compression, which are often difficult to demonstrate with oily contrast media. Side effects were mild and transient, and no serious complications were encountered.

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Georges Ouaknine, Isaac Z. Kosary, Jackson Braham, Pinhas Czerniak and Hillel Nathan

✓ Thirty patients with the clinical signs of brain death were subjected to a series of laboratory tests reputed to be capable of confirming this state. Three new procedures, electronystagmography, RISA intrathecal studies, and brain temperature tests, are described. The authors conclude that certain bedside tests, namely, electroencephalography, echoencephalography, electronystagmography, and electrocardiographic response to atropine, have been shown to be entirely adequate for a confident diagnosis.