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Sergio Cavalheiro, María Laura Canullo, Marcos Devanir Silva da Costa, Patricia Alessandra Dastoli, Jardel Mendonça Nicácio, and João Norberto Stavale

Glioependymal cysts are a rare, congenital, and benign condition. The authors report a case of a 2-year-old female patient who presented with a large exophytic glioependymal cyst located in the left cerebral peduncle, which began with a history of deteriorating function of the left third cranial nerve (CN III). A left 3-piece fronto-orbitozygomatic approach and a microsurgical complete excision of the cyst were performed without complications by accessing the midbrain through the perioculomotor entry zone. The patient’s CN III function completely recovered after 3 months. Because there are currently no widely approved and used classification systems for these cysts, their reporting, naming, and classification are quite confusing in the literature. Thus, their origin, classification, and most common locations warrant further investigation. In addition to reporting this case, the authors present their review of the literature.

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Marcos Devanir Silva da Costa, Nicole Cavalari Camargo, Patricia Alessandra Dastoli, Jardel Mendonça Nicácio, Frederico Adolfo Benevides Silva, Maria Luisa Sucharski Figueiredo, Michael Jenwei Chen, Andrea Maria Cappellano, Nasjla Saba da Silva, and Sergio Cavalheiro

OBJECTIVE

Tumors of the CNS are the main causes of childhood cancer and have an incidence that exceeds that of leukemia. In addition, they are the leading causes of cancer-related death in childhood. High-grade gliomas account for 11% of such neoplasms and are characterized by aggressive clinical behavior and high morbidity and mortality. There is a lack of studies focusing on the factors that can prolong survival in these patients or guide therapeutic interventions. The authors aimed to investigate the factors related to longer survival durations, with a focus on reoperation for gross-total resection (GTR).

METHODS

In this retrospective cohort study, the authors analyzed 78 patients diagnosed with high-grade gliomas occurring across all CNS locations except diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas. Patients 0 to < 19 years of age were followed up at the Pediatric Oncology Institute. Overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were analyzed in the context of various prognostic factors, such as age, sex, histology, extent of tumor resection, reoperation for GTR, adjuvant treatment, and treatment initiation from 2010 onward.

RESULTS

With a mean age at diagnosis of 8.7 years, 50% of the patients were female and approximately 39% underwent GTR at some point, which was already achieved in approximately 46% of them in the first surgery. The median OS was 17 months, and PFS was 10 months. In terms of median OS, the authors found no significant difference between those with reoperation for GTR and patients without GTR during treatment. Significant differences were observed in the OS in terms of the extent of resection in the first surgery, age, sex, Ki-67 expression, adjuvant treatment, and treatment initiation from 2010 onward. Furthermore, the PFS values significantly differed between those with GTR in the first surgery and Ki-67 expression ≥ 50%.

CONCLUSIONS

This study demonstrates the importance of GTR for these neoplasms, highlights the role of surgeons in its achievement in the first attempt, and questions the role of reoperation for this purpose. Finally, this study further supports the use of combined adjuvant treatment for the improvement of OS and PFS.

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Sergio Cavalheiro, Marcos Devanir Silva da Costa, Jardel Mendonça Nicácio, Patricia Alessandra Dastoli, Italo Capraro Suriano, Mauricio Mendes Barbosa, Hérbene Jose Milani, Stéphanno Gomes Pereira Sarmento, Tereza Cristina Carbonari de Faria, and Antonio Fernandes Moron

OBJECTIVE

In this study, the authors retrospectively reviewed two cohorts of patients with occipital encephalocele (OE) and demonstrate the technical aspects of an innovative and unprecedented method for fetal OE correction.

METHODS

This was a cross-sectional retrospective study of 22 patients who underwent surgery from July 2012 to July 2018. The inclusion criteria for participants were a gestational age between 19 weeks and 27 weeks, a maternal age ≥ 18 years, a normal fetal karyotype, the presence of microcephaly, and a cystic hernial sac with the cystic component accounting for more than 80% of the total volume, which was larger than 10 ml. The fetuses with OE and microcephaly underwent intrauterine repair. The exclusion criteria were the presence of a fetal anomaly not associated with OE, chromosomopathy, presence of the brainstem inside the hernial sac or venous sinuses inside the herniated content, the risk of premature birth, placenta previa, and maternal conditions that would constitute an additional risk for fetal and maternal health, as well as refusal for fetal surgery. The authors reviewed the potential for microcephaly reversal and the long-term neurocognitive development.

RESULTS

The authors report the cases of 9 fetuses with OE and microcephaly who underwent intrauterine OE repair at gestational ages of less than 27 weeks (fetal group). One case selected for fetal surgery also presented with placental abruption. All patients who underwent the fetal operation had microcephaly reversal, and 3 patients required ventriculoperitoneal shunting in the 1st year of life. The authors reviewed the cases of 12 patients who underwent postnatal repair. In 10 cases, fetal surgery was refused (postnatal group), and in 2 cases, the inclusion criteria for fetal surgery were not met. The authors evaluated the neurocognitive development of the patients with the Bayley Scales of Infant Development II. The median score for the fetal group was 98.7, and that for the postnatal group was 27.8.

CONCLUSIONS

The intrauterine repair of OE may stop the progression of encephalocele sac herniation and result in microcephaly reversal. The fetal group had a better cognitive outcome than the postnatal group. The technique required to correct this defect is feasible for those with previous experience in the correction of fetal myelomeningocele. However, more studies are needed to ensure the efficacy of this procedure.