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Krishna C. Joshi, Hamid Borghei-Razavi and Varun R. Kshettry

Brainstem cavernomas are benign, angiographically occult, low-flow lesions and constitute 18%–35% of intracranial cavernomas.4,6 They are known to have an annual rupture risk of 2%–6%,2,5 and once symptomatic, they frequently cause progressive neurological morbidity. A 22-year-old lady presented with progressive profound neurologic deficits from three distinct hemorrhages over 2 months. Surgery was indicated given the aggressive natural history, and the lesion now presented to the surface with displacement of corticospinal tracts noted on diffusion tensor imaging.1,7 We describe a surgical technique via an orbitozygomatic transsylvian pretemporal approach with uncal resection to open the oculomotor-tentorial window and resect the lesion.3

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/j5yYp4OsaRc.

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Ryosuke Tomio, Masahiro Toda, Kazunari Yoshida and Hamid Borghei-Razavi

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Mayur Sharma, Daria Krivosheya, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Gene H. Barnett and Alireza M. Mohammadi

Laser interstitial thermal therapy (LITT) is a minimally invasive stereotactic technique that causes tumor ablation using thermal energy. LITT has shown to be efficacious for the treatment of deep-seated brain lesions, including those near eloquent areas. In this video, the authors present the case of a 62-year-old man with a history of metastatic melanoma who presented with worsening right-sided hemiparesis. MRI revealed a contrast-enhancing lesion in left centrum semiovale in close proximity to corticospinal tracts, consistent with radiation necrosis. The authors review their stepwise technique of LITT with special attention to details for a lesion located near eloquent area.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/ndrTgi6MXqE.

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Huy Q. Truong, Edinson Najera, Robert Zanabria-Ortiz, Emrah Celtikci, Xicai Sun, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Paul A. Gardner and Juan C. Fernandez-Miranda

OBJECTIVE

The endoscopic endonasal approach has become a routine corridor to the suprasellar region. The superior hypophyseal arteries (SHAs) are intimately related to lesions in the suprasellar space, such as craniopharyngiomas and meningiomas. Here the authors investigate the surgical anatomy and variations of the SHA from the endoscopic endonasal perspective.

METHODS

Thirty anatomical specimens with vascular injection were used for endoscopic endonasal dissection. The number of SHAs and their origin, course, branching, anastomoses, and areas of supply were collected and analyzed.

RESULTS

A total of 110 SHAs arising from 60 internal carotid arteries (ICAs), or 1.83 SHAs per ICA (range 0–3), were found. The most proximal SHA always ran in the preinfundibular space and provided the major blood supply to the infundibulum, optic chiasm, and proximal optic nerve; it was defined as the primary SHA (pSHA). The more distal SHA(s), present in 78.3% of sides, ran in the retroinfundibular space and supplied the stalk and may also supply the tuber cinereum and optic tracts. In the two sides (3.3%) in which no SHA was present, the territory was covered by a pair of infundibular arteries originating from the posterior communicating artery. Two-thirds of the pSHAs originated proximal to the distal dural ring; half of these arose from the carotid cave portion of the ICA, whereas the other half originated proximal to the cave. Four branching patterns of the pSHA were recognized, with the most common pattern (41.7%) consisting of three or more branches with a tree-like pattern. Descending branches were absent in 25% of cases. Preinfundibular anastomoses between pSHAs were found in all specimens. Anastomoses between the pSHA and the secondary SHA (sSHA) or the infundibular arteries were found in 75% cases.

CONCLUSIONS

The first SHA almost always supplies the infundibulum, optic chiasm, and proximal optic nerve and represents the pSHA. Compromising this artery can cause a visual deficit. Unilateral injury to the pSHA is less likely to cause an endocrine deficit given the artery’s abundant anastomoses. A detailed understanding of the surgical anatomy of the SHA and its many variations may help surgeons when approaching challenging lesions in the suprasellar region.

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Huy Q. Truong, Xicai Sun, Emrah Celtikci, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Eric W. Wang, Carl H. Snyderman, Paul A. Gardner and Juan C. Fernandez-Miranda

OBJECTIVE

Multiple approaches have been designed to reach the medial middle fossa (for lesions in Meckel’s cave, in particular), but an anterior approach through the greater wing of the sphenoid (transalisphenoid) has not been explored. In this study, the authors sought to assess the feasibility of and define the anatomical landmarks for an endoscopic anterior transmaxillary transalisphenoid (EATT) approach to Meckel’s cave and the middle cranial fossa.

METHODS

Endoscopic dissection was performed on 5 cadaver heads injected intravascularly with colored silicone bilaterally to develop the approach and define surgical landmarks. The authors then used this approach in 2 patients with tumors that involved Meckel’s cave and provide their illustrative clinical case reports.

RESULTS

The EATT approach is divided into the following 4 stages: 1) entry into the maxillary sinus, 2) exposure of the greater wing of the sphenoid, 3) exposure of the medial middle fossa, and 4) exposure of Meckel’s cave and lateral wall of the cavernous sinus. The approach provided excellent surgical access to the anterior and lateral portions of Meckel’s cave and offered the possibility of expanding into the infratemporal fossa and lateral middle fossa and, in combination with an endonasal transpterygoid approach, accessing the anteromedial aspect of Meckel’s cave.

CONCLUSIONS

The EATT approach to Meckel’s cave and the middle cranial fossa is technically feasible and confers certain advantages in specific clinical situations. The approach might complement current surgical approaches for lesions of Meckel’s cave and could be ideal for lesions that are lateral to the trigeminal ganglion in Meckel’s cave or extend from the maxillary sinus, infratemporal fossa, or pterygopalatine fossa into the middle cranial fossa, Meckel’s cave, and cavernous sinus, such as schwannomas, meningiomas, and sinonasal tumors and perineural spread of cutaneous malignancy.

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Huy Q. Truong, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Edinson Najera, Ana Carolina Igami Nakassa, Eric W. Wang, Carl H. Snyderman, Paul A. Gardner and Juan C. Fernandez-Miranda

OBJECTIVE

The endoscopic endonasal transcavernous approach with interdural pituitary transposition provides surgical access to the posterior clinoids and interpeduncular cistern. Prior to posterior clinoidectomy, selective coagulation and transection of the inferior hypophyseal artery (IHA) is recommended to prevent uncontrolled tearing of the artery and its avulsion from the wall of the cavernous carotid artery. The authors’ preliminary experience has shown that unilateral sacrifice of the IHA caused no permanent endocrine dysfunction. In this study, they investigated the pituitary function in the setting of bilateral sacrifice of IHAs and pituitary transposition.

METHODS

All patients with normal preoperative pituitary function who underwent endoscopic endonasal bilateral posterior clinoidectomy with bilateral IHA sacrifice between March 2010 and December 2016 were included and retrospectively evaluated. All data regarding pituitary function were collected. The degree of pituitary gland manipulation was estimated based on tumor size on preoperative MRI. An angle between a line from the point where the gland meets the floor of the sella to the highest point of the tumor and the horizontal plane of the sellar floor, or access angle, was also measured. Posterior pituitary bright spots on pre- and postoperative T1-weighted MRI were also reported.

RESULTS

Twenty patients had bilateral transcavernous posterior clinoidectomies with coagulation of both IHAs. There were 13 chordomas, 3 epidermoid cysts, 2 chondrosarcomas, 1 meningioma, and 1 hemangiopericytoma. The mean follow-up was 19 months (range 13–84 months). Two patients experienced transient diabetes insipidus (DI) requiring desmopressin, which resolved before hospital discharge. One patient (with chordoma) developed delayed permanent DI, and a second patient (with hemangiopericytoma) developed permanent DI and panhypopituitarism. The access angle was higher in the group with pituitary dysfunction (47.25° compared to 33.81°; p = 0.07). Posterior pituitary bright spots were preserved in 75% of cases with normal postoperative endocrine function.

CONCLUSIONS

The endoscopic endonasal transcavernous approach to the interpeduncular cistern with pituitary transposition and bilateral sacrifice of the IHAs does not cause pituitary dysfunction in a majority of patients. When endocrine deficit occurs, it appears to be more likely to have been caused by surgical manipulation than loss of blood supply. This finding confirms clinically the crucial concept of interarterial anastomosis of pituitary vasculature proposed by anatomists.

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Krishna C. Joshi, Alankrita Raghavan, Baha’eddin Muhsen, Jason Hsieh, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Samuel T. Chao, Gene H. Barnett, John H. Suh, Gennady Neyman, Varun R. Kshettry, Pablo F. Recinos, Alireza M. Mohammadi and Lilyana Angelov

OBJECTIVE

Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) has been successfully used for the treatment of intracranial meningiomas given its steep dose gradients and high-dose conformality. However, treatment of skull base meningiomas (SBMs) may pose significant risk to adjacent radiation-sensitive structures such as the cranial nerves. Fractionated GKRS (fGKRS) may decrease this risk, but until recently it has not been practical with traditional pin-based systems. This study reports the authors’ experience in treating SBMs with fGKRS, using a relocatable, noninvasive immobilization system.

METHODS

The authors performed a retrospective review of all patients who underwent fGKRS for SBMs between 2013 and 2018 delivered using the Extend relocatable frame system or the Icon system. Patient demographics, pre- and post-GKRS tumor characteristics, perilesional edema, prior treatment details, and clinical symptoms were evaluated. Volumetric analysis of pre-GKRS, post-GKRS, and subsequent follow-up visits was performed.

RESULTS

Twenty-five patients met inclusion criteria. Nineteen patients were treated with the Icon system, and 6 patients were treated with the Extend system. The mean pre-fGKRS tumor volume was 7.62 cm3 (range 4.57–13.07 cm3). The median margin dose was 25 Gy delivered in 4 (8%) or 5 (92%) fractions. The median follow-up time was 12.4 months (range 4.7–17.4 months). Two patients (9%) experienced new-onset cranial neuropathy at the first follow-up. The mean postoperative tumor volume reduction was 15.9% with 6 patients (27%) experiencing improvement of cranial neuropathy at the first follow-up. Median first follow-up scans were obtained at 3.4 months (range 2.8–4.3 months). Three patients (12%) developed asymptomatic, mild perilesional edema by the first follow-up, which remained stable subsequently.

CONCLUSIONS

fGKRS with relocatable, noninvasive immobilization systems is well tolerated in patients with SBMs and demonstrated satisfactory tumor control as well as limited radiation toxicity. Future prospective studies with long-term follow-up and comparison to single-session GKRS or fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy are necessary to validate these findings and determine the efficacy of this approach in the management of SBMs.

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Benjamin B. Whiting, Bryan S. Lee, Vaidehi Mahadev, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Sanchit Ahuja, Xuefei Jia, Alireza M. Mohammadi, Gene H. Barnett, Lilyana Angelov, Shobana Rajan, Rafi Avitsian and Michael A. Vogelbaum

OBJECTIVE

Current management of gliomas involves a multidisciplinary approach, including a combination of maximal safe resection, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. The use of intraoperative MRI (iMRI) helps to maximize extent of resection (EOR), and use of awake functional mapping supports preservation of eloquent areas of the brain. This study reports on the combined use of these surgical adjuncts.

METHODS

The authors performed a retrospective review of patients with gliomas who underwent minimal access craniotomy in their iMRI suite (IMRIS) with awake functional mapping between 2010 and 2017. Patient demographics, tumor characteristics, intraoperative and postoperative adverse events, and treatment details were obtained. Volumetric analysis of preoperative tumor volume as well as intraoperative and postoperative residual volumes was performed.

RESULTS

A total of 61 patients requiring 62 tumor resections met the inclusion criteria. Of the tumors resected, 45.9% were WHO grade I or II and 54.1% were WHO grade III or IV. Intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring modalities included speech alone in 23 cases (37.1%), motor alone in 24 (38.7%), and both speech and motor in 15 (24.2%). Intraoperative MRI demonstrated residual tumor in 48 cases (77.4%), 41 (85.4%) of whom underwent further resection. Median EOR on iMRI and postoperative MRI was 86.0% and 98.5%, respectively, with a mean difference of 10% and a median difference of 10.5% (p < 0.001). Seventeen of 62 cases achieved an increased EOR > 15% related to use of iMRI. Seventeen (60.7%) of 28 low-grade gliomas and 10 (30.3%) of 33 high-grade gliomas achieved complete resection. Significant intraoperative events included at least temporary new or worsened speech alteration in 7 of 38 cases who underwent speech mapping (18.4%), new or worsened weakness in 7 of 39 cases who underwent motor mapping (18.0%), numbness in 2 cases (3.2%), agitation in 2 (3.2%), and seizures in 2 (3.2%). Among the patients with new intraoperative deficits, 2 had residual speech difficulty, and 2 had weakness postoperatively, which improved to baseline strength by 6 months.

CONCLUSIONS

In this retrospective case series, the combined use of iMRI and awake functional mapping was demonstrated to be safe and feasible. This combined approach allows one to achieve the dual goals of maximal tumor removal and minimal functional consequences in patients undergoing glioma resection.

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Yi-Chieh Hung, Cheng-Chia Lee, Huai-che Yang, Nasser Mohammed, Kathryn N. Kearns, Ahmed M. Nabeel, Khaled Abdel Karim, Reem M. Emad Eldin, Amr M. N. El-Shehaby, Wael A. Reda, Sameh R. Tawadros, Roman Liscak, Jana Jezkova, L. Dade Lunsford, Hideyuki Kano, Nathaniel D. Sisterson, Roberto Martínez Álvarez, Nuria E. Martínez Moreno, Douglas Kondziolka, John G. Golfinos, Inga Grills, Andrew Thompson, Hamid Borghei-Razavi, Tanmoy Kumar Maiti, Gene H. Barnett, James McInerney, Brad E. Zacharia, Zhiyuan Xu and Jason P. Sheehan

OBJECTIVE

The most common functioning pituitary adenoma is prolactinoma. Patients with medically refractory or residual/recurrent tumors that are not amenable to resection can be treated with stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS). The aim of this multicenter study was to evaluate the role of SRS for treating prolactinomas.

METHODS

This retrospective study included prolactinomas treated with SRS between 1997 and 2016 at ten institutions. Patients’ clinical and treatment parameters were investigated. Patients were considered to be in endocrine remission when they had a normal level of prolactin (PRL) without requiring dopamine agonist medications. Endocrine control was defined as endocrine remission or a controlled PRL level ≤ 30 ng/ml with dopamine agonist therapy. Other outcomes were evaluated including new-onset hormone deficiency, tumor recurrence, and new neurological complications.

RESULTS

The study cohort comprised 289 patients. The endocrine remission rates were 28%, 41%, and 54% at 3, 5, and 8 years after SRS, respectively. Following SRS, 25% of patients (72/289) had new hormone deficiency. Sixty-three percent of the patients (127/201) with available data attained endocrine control. Three percent of patients (9/269) had a new visual complication after SRS. Five percent of the patients (13/285) were recorded as having tumor progression. A pretreatment PRL level ≤ 270 ng/ml was a predictor of endocrine remission (p = 0.005, adjusted HR 0.487). An increasing margin dose resulted in better endocrine control after SRS (p = 0.033, adjusted OR 1.087).

CONCLUSIONS

In patients with medically refractory prolactinomas or a residual/recurrent prolactinoma, SRS affords remarkable therapeutic effects in endocrine remission, endocrine control, and tumor control. New-onset hypopituitarism is the most common adverse event.