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Jian Shen, Kai-Yuan Huang, Yu Zhu, Jian-Wei Pan, Hao Jiang, Yu-Xiang Weng, and Ren-Ya Zhan

OBJECTIVE

The efficacy of statin therapy in treating aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) remains controversial. In this meta-analysis, the authors investigated whether statin treatment significantly reduced the incidence of cerebral vasospasm and delayed neurological deficits, promoting a better outcome after aneurysmal SAH.

METHODS

A literature search of the PubMed, Ovid, and Cochrane Library databases was performed for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and prospective cohort studies investigating the effect of statin treatment. The end points of cerebral vasospasm, delayed ischemic neurological deficit (DIND), delayed cerebral infarction, mortality, and favorable outcome were statistically analyzed.

RESULTS

Six RCTs and 2 prospective cohort studies met the eligibility criteria, and a total of 1461 patients were included. The meta-analysis demonstrated a significant decrease in the incidence of cerebral vasospasm (relative risk [RR] 0.76, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.61–0.96) in patients treated with statins after aneurysmal SAH. However, no significant benefit was observed for DIND (RR 0.88, 95% CI 0.70–1.12), delayed cerebral infarction (RR 0.66, 95% CI 0.33–1.31), mortality (RR 0.69, 95% CI 0.39–1.24) or favorable outcome, according to assessment by the modified Rankin Scale or Glasgow Outcome Scale (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.92–1.17).

CONCLUSIONS

Treatment with statins significantly decreased the occurrence of vasospasm after aneurysmal SAH. The incidence of DIND, delayed cerebral infarction, and mortality were not affected by statin treatment. Future research should focus on DIND and how statins influence DIND.

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Shi-hao Zheng, Jin-lan Huang, Ming Chen, Bing-long Wang, Qi-shui Ou, and Sheng-yue Huang

OBJECTIVE

Glioma is the most common form of brain tumor and has high lethality. The authors of this study aimed to elucidate the efficiency of preoperative inflammatory markers, including neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio (NLR), derived NLR (dNLR), platelet/lymphocyte ratio (PLR), lymphocyte/monocyte ratio (LMR), and prognostic nutritional index (PNI), and their paired combinations as tools for the preoperative diagnosis of glioma, with particular interest in its most aggressive form, glioblastoma (GBM).

METHODS

The medical records of patients newly diagnosed with glioma, acoustic neuroma, meningioma, or nonlesional epilepsy at 3 hospitals between January 2011 and February 2016 were collected and retrospectively analyzed. The values of NLR, dNLR, PLR, LMR, and PNI were compared among patients suffering from glioma, acoustic neuroma, meningioma, and nonlesional epilepsy and healthy controls by using nonparametric tests. Correlations between NLR, dNLR, PLR, LMR, PNI, and tumor grade were analyzed. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis was performed to evaluate the diagnostic significance of NLR, dNLR, PLR, LMR, PNI, and their paired combinations for glioma, particularly GBM.

RESULTS

A total of 750 patients with glioma (Grade I, 81 patients; Grade II, 208 patients; Grade III, 169 patients; Grade IV [GBM], 292 patients), 44 with acoustic neuroma, 271 with meningioma, 102 with nonlesional epilepsy, and 682 healthy controls were included in this study. Compared with healthy controls and patients with acoustic neuroma, meningioma, or nonlesional epilepsy, the patients with glioma had higher values of preoperative NLR and dNLR as well as lower values of LMR and PNI, whereas PLR was higher in glioma patients than in healthy controls and patients with nonlesional epilepsy. Subgroup analysis revealed a positive correlation between NLR, dNLR, PLR, and tumor grade but a negative correlation between LMR, PNI, and tumor grade in glioma. For glioma diagnosis, the area under the curve (AUC) obtained from the ROC curve was 0.722 (0.697–0.747) for NLR, 0.696 (0.670–0.722) for dNLR, 0.576 (0.549–0.604) for PLR, 0.760 (0.738–0.783) for LMR, and 0.672 (0.646–0.698) for PNI. The best diagnostic performance was obtained with the combination of NLR+LMR and dNLR+LMR, with AUCs of 0.777 and 0.778, respectively. Additionally, NLR (AUC 0.860, 95% CI 0.832–0.887), dNLR (0.840, 0.810–0.869), PLR (0.678, 0.641–0.715), LMR (0.837, 0.811–0.863), and PNI (0.740, 0.706–0.773) had significant predictive value for GBM compared with healthy controls and other disease groups. As compared with the Grade I–III glioma patients, the GBM patients had an AUC of 0.811 (95% CI 0.778–0.844) for NLR, 0.797 (0.763–0.832) for dNLR, 0.662 (0.622–0.702) for PLR, 0.743 (0.707–0.779) for LMR, and 0.661(0.622–0.701) for PNI. For the paired combinations, NLR+LMR demonstrated the highest accuracy.

CONCLUSIONS

The NLR+LMR combination was revealed as a noninvasive biomarker with relatively high sensitivity and specificity for glioma diagnosis, the differential diagnosis of glioma from acoustic neuroma and meningioma, GBM diagnosis, and the differential diagnosis of GBM from low-grade glioma.

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Bing Huang, Ming Yao, QiLiang Chen, Huidan Lin, Xindan Du, Hao Huang, Xian Zhao, Huy Do, and Xiang Qian

OBJECTIVE

Hemifacial spasm (HFS) is a debilitating neuromuscular disorder with limited treatment options. The current study describes a novel minimally invasive procedure that provided effective and sustained relief for patients with HFS. The authors provide a detailed description of the awake CT-guided percutaneous radiofrequency ablation (RFA) of the facial nerve for treatment of HFS, and they examine its clinical efficacy. This is the first time in the literature that this procedure has been applied and systematically analyzed for HFS.

METHODS

Patients with a history of HFS were recruited between August 2018 and April 2020. Those with a history of cerebellopontine lesions, coagulopathy, ongoing pregnancy, cardiac pacemaker or defibrillator implants, or who declined the procedure were excluded from the study. Fifty-three patients who met the study criteria were included and underwent awake CT-guided RFA. Under minimal sedation, a radiofrequency (RF) needle was used to reach the stylomastoid foramen on the affected side under CT guidance, and the facial nerve was localized using a low-frequency stimulation current. Patients were instructed to engage facial muscles as a proxy for motor monitoring during RFA. Ablation stopped when the patients’ hemifacial contracture resolved. Patients were kept for inpatient monitoring for 24 hours postoperatively and were followed up monthly to monitor resolution of HFS and complications for up to 19 months.

RESULTS

The average duration of the procedure was 32–34 minutes. Postoperatively, 91% of the patients (48/53) had complete resolution of HFS, whereas the remaining individuals had partial resolution. A total of 48 patients reported mild to moderate facial paralysis immediately post-RFA, but most resolved within 1 month. No other significant complication was observed during the study period. By the end of the study period, 5 patients had recurrence of mild HFS symptoms, whereas only 2 patients reported dissatisfaction with the treatment results.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors report for the first time that awake CT-guided RFA of the facial nerve at the stylomastoid foramen is a minimally invasive procedure and can be an effective treatment option for HFS.

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Fon-Yih Tsuang, Abel Po-Hao Huang, Yi-Hsin Tsai, Jo-Yu Chen, Jing-Er Lee, Yong-Kwang Tu, and Kuo-Chuan Wang

Object

Traumatic subdural effusion (TSE) is a common sequela of traumatic brain injury. Surgical intervention is suggested only when TSE exerts mass effect. The authors have found that many patients with TSE exerting mass effect have concomitant hydrocephalus. Patient experiencing this occurrence were studied, and the pathogenesis of this phenomenon was discussed in the context of recent advances in the understanding of CSF circulation.

Methods

During a 2-year period, the authors' institution treated 14 patients with TSE who developed hydrocephalus, after 1 of the patients suffered subdural drainage and other 13 received subdural peritoneal shunt (SPSs). Thirteen of those who had SPSs received programmable ventriculoperitoneal shunts (VPSs) for the hydrocephalus. The clinical characteristics as well as the imaging and operative findings of these patients were reviewed.

Results

All patients with symptomatic TSE exerting mass effect received SPSs. All of these patients had a modified Frontal Horn Index of more than 0.33 at presentation, and high opening pressure on durotomy. Following a brief period (4–7 days) of clinical improvement, the condition of all patients deteriorated due to hydrocephalus. Programmable VPSs were inserted with the initial pressure set at approximately 8–10 cm H2O according to opening pressure at ventriculostomy. Shunt valve pressure was gradually decreased to 5–7 cm H2O, according to clinical and radiological follow-up.

Conclusions

Elevated modified Frontal Horn Index in patients with TSE is suggestive of concomitant hydrocephalus. The authors propose that tearing of the dura-arachnoid plane following trauma contributes to TSE and may also impede CSF circulation, causing hydrocephalus. Shunt pressure was adjusted to relative low pressure, indicating the old age of the patients and poor reexpansion of brain parenchyma after the mass effect. Subdural peritoneal shunts and VPSs are indicated in those patients with TSE exerting mass effect with concomitant hydrocephalus.

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Jianguo Xu, Chao You, Sizhong Zhang, Siqing Huang, Bowen Cai, Zhenggui Wu, and Hao Li

Object

Craniopharyngioma is one of the most common congenital tumors of the sellar and suprasellar regions and accounts for between 4 and 6% of all intracranial tumors. Its oncogenesis and biological behavior have not been well studied, and neither a cell line nor an animal model have been established. To better understand the tumor and improve its clinical management, the authors investigated the angiogenesis and cellular proliferation in subcutaneous craniopharyngioma xenografts obtained by implanting human tumor cells into athymic nude mice.

Methods

Human craniopharyngioma cells obtained from surgical specimens were subcutaneously implanted into BALB/c-nu/nu nude mice to establish a preliminary animal model of a transplanted tumor. Immunohistochemical staining with streptavidin–peroxidase complex was used to identify the cell phenotype and to evaluate the angiogenesis and proliferation in the xenografts. Expression of cytokeratin, minichromosome maintenance deficient 6 (MCM6) protein, and endothelial cell marker CD34 on the xenograft sections were assayed quantitatively by computer-assisted microscopy.

Twenty-seven surviving subcutaneous xenografts were obtained in 15 nude mice. The total implantation success rate was 28.12% (adamantine epithelioma [AE], 37.50%; squamous papillary tumor [SPT], 18.75%). Formation of capillaries and cell proliferation were observed in all of these xenografts. Microvessel density and degree of MCM6 immunostaining were positively correlated in the surviving grafts (r = 0.410, p < 0.05), but there was no significant difference in these variables between the AE and SPT groups (p > 0.05).

Conclusions

A preliminary animal model of human craniopharyngioma was established in the nude mouse by heterotopic implantation. Surviving xenografts maintained their vascularization and proliferation activities until harvesting at 12 weeks.

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Abel Po-Hao Huang, Jui-Chang Tsai, Lu-Ting Kuo, Chung-Wei Lee, Hong-Shiee Lai, Li-Kai Tsai, Sheng-Jean Huang, Chien-Min Chen, Yuan-Shen Chen, Hao-Yu Chuang, and Max Wintermark

Object

Currently, perfusion CT (PCT) is a valuable imaging technique that has been successfully applied to the clinical management of patients with ischemic stroke and aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). However, recent literature and the authors' experience have shown that PCT has many more important clinical applications in a variety of neurosurgical conditions. Therefore, the authors share their experiences of its application in various diseases of the cerebrovascular, neurotraumatology, and neurooncology fields and review the pertinent literature regarding expanding PCT applications for neurosurgical conditions, including pitfalls and future developments.

Methods

A pertinent literature search was conducted of English-language articles describing original research, case series, and case reports from 1990 to 2011 involving PCT and with relevance and applicability to neurosurgical disorders.

Results

In the cerebrovascular field, PCT is already in use as a diagnostic tool for patients suspected of having an ischemic stroke. Perfusion CT can be used to identify and define the extent of the infarct core and ischemic penumbra core, and thus aid patient selection for acute reperfusion therapy. For patients with aneurysmal SAH, PCT provides assessment of early brain injury, cerebral ischemia, and infarction, in addition to vasospasm. It may also be used to aid case selection for aggressive treatment of patients with poor SAH grade. In terms of oncological applications, PCT can be used as an imaging biomarker to assess angiogenesis and response to antiangiogenetic treatments, differentiate between glioma grades, and distinguish recurrent tumor from radiation necrosis. In the setting of traumatic brain injury, PCT can detect and delineate contusions at an early stage. In patients with mild head injury, PCT results have been shown to correlate with the severity and duration of postconcussion syndrome. In patients with moderate or severe head injury, PCT results have been shown to correlate with patients' functional outcome.

Conclusions

Perfusion CT provides quantitative and qualitative data that can add diagnostic and prognostic value in a number of neurosurgical disorders, and also help with clinical decision making. With emerging new technical developments in PCT, such as characterization of blood-brain barrier permeability and whole-brain PCT, this technique is expected to provide more and more insight into the pathophysiology of many neurosurgical conditions.

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Huan-Chih Wang, Jui-Chang Tsai, Jing-Er Lee, Sheng-Jean Huang, Abel Po-Hao Huang, Wei-Chou Lin, Sung-Tsang Hsieh, and Kuo-Chuan Wang

OBJECTIVE

Direct brain compression and secondary injury due to increased intracranial pressure are believed to be the pathognomic causes of a grave outcome in acute subdural hemorrhage (aSDH). However, ischemic damage from aSDH has received limited attention. The authors hypothesized that cerebral microcirculation is altered after aSDH. Direct visualization of microcirculation was conducted in a novel rat model.

METHODS

A craniectomy was performed on each of the 18 experimental adult Wistar rats, followed by superfusion of autologous arterial blood onto the cortical surface. Changes in microcirculation were recorded by capillary videoscopy. Blood flow and the partial pressure of oxygen in the brain tissue (PbtO2) were measured at various depths from the cortex. The brain was then sectioned for pathological examination. The effects of aspirin pretreatment were also examined.

RESULTS

Instantaneous vasospasm of small cortical arteries after aSDH was observed; thrombosis also developed 120 minutes after aSDH. Reductions in blood flow and PbtO2 were found at depths of 2–4 mm. Blood-brain barrier disruption and thrombi formation were confirmed using immunohistochemical staining, while aspirin pretreatment reduced thrombosis and the impairment of microcirculation.

CONCLUSIONS

Microcirculation impairment was demonstrated in this aSDH model. Aspirin pretreatment prevented the diffuse thrombosis of cortical and subcortical vessels after aSDH.

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Wei Dong Zhu, Qi Huang, Xi Ye Li, Hong Sai Chen, Zhao Yan Wang, and Hao Wu

OBJECT

Cavernous hemangioma of the internal auditory canal (IAC) is an extremely rare type of tumor, and only 50 cases have been reported in the literature prior to this study. The aim in this study was to describe the symptomatology, radiological features, and surgical outcomes for patients with cavernous hemangioma of the IAC and to discuss the diagnostic criteria and treatment strategy for the disease.

METHODS

The study included 6 patients with cavernous hemangioma of the IAC. All patients presented with sensorineural hearing loss and tinnitus, and 2 also suffered from vertigo. Five patients reported a history of facial symptoms with hemispasm or palsy: 3 had progressive facial weakness, 1 had a hemispasm, and 1 had a history of recovery from sudden facial paresis. All patients underwent CT and MRI to rule out intracanalicular vestibular schwannomas and facial nerve neuromas. Five patients had their tumors surgically removed, while 1 patient, who did not have facial problems, was followed up with a wait-and-scan approach.

RESULTS

All patients had a presurgical diagnosis of cavernous hemangioma of the IAC, which was confirmed pathologically in the 5 patients who underwent surgical removal of the tumor. The translabyrinthine approach was used to remove the tumor in 4 patients, while the middle cranial fossa approach was used in the 1 patient who still had functional hearing. Tumors adhered to cranial nerves VII and/or VIII and were difficult to dissect from nerve sheaths during surgeries. Complete hearing loss occurred in all 5 patients. In 3 patients, the facial nerve could not be separated from the tumor, and primary end-to-end anastomosis was performed. Intact facial nerve preservation was achieved in 2 patients. Patients were followed up for at least 1 year after treatment, and MRI showed no evidence of tumor regrowth. All patients experienced some level of recovery in facial nerve function.

CONCLUSIONS

Cavernous hemangioma of the IAC can be diagnosed preoperatively through analysis of clinical features and neuroimaging. Early surgical intervention may preserve the functional integrity of the facial nerve and provide a better outcome after nerve reconstruction. However, preservation of functional hearing may not be achieved, even with the retrosigmoid or middle cranial fossa approaches. The translabyrinthine approach seems to be the most appropriate approach overall, as the facial nerve can be easily located and reconstructed.

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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.

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Lu-Ting Kuo, Chien-Min Chen, Chien-Hsun Li, Jui-Chang Tsai, Hsiu-Chu Chiu, Ling-Chun Liu, Yong-Kwang Tu, and Abel Po-Hao Huang

Object

Currently, the effectiveness of minimally invasive evacuation of intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) utilizing the endoscopic method is uncertain and the technique is considered investigational. The authors analyzed their experience with this method in terms of case selection, surgical technique, and long-term results.

Methods

The authors performed a retrospective analysis of the clinical and radiographic data obtained in 68 patients treated with endoscope-assisted ICH evacuation. Rebleeding, morbidity, and mortality were recorded as primary end points. Hematoma evacuation rate was calculated by comparing the pre- and postoperative CT scans. Glasgow Coma Scale scores and scores on the extended Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOSE) were recorded at the 6-month postoperative follow-up. The technical aspect of this report explains details of the procedure, the instruments that are used, the methods for hemostasis, and the role of hemostatic agents in the management of intraoperative hemorrhage. The pertinent literature was reviewed and summarized.

Results

All surgeries were performed within 12 hours of ictus, and 84% of the surgeries were performed within 4 hours. The mortality rate was 5.9%, and surgery-related morbidity occurred in 3 cases (4.4%). The hematoma evacuation rate was 93% overall—96% in the putaminal group, 86% in the thalamic group, and 98% in the subcortical group. The rebleeding rate was 1.5%. The mean operative time was 85 minutes, and the average blood loss was 56 ml. The mean GOSE score was 4.9 at 6-month follow-up. The authors acknowledge the limitations of these preliminary results in a small number of patients.

Conclusions

The data suggest that early endoscope-assisted ICH evacuation is safe and effective in the management of supratentorial ICH. The rebleeding, morbidity, and mortality rates are low compared with rates reported in the literature for the traditional craniotomy method. This study also showed that early and complete evacuation of ICH may lead to improved outcomes in selected patients. However, the safety and efficacy of endoscope-assisted ICH evacuation should be further investigated in a large, prospective, randomized trial.