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Emilio González-Martínez, David Santamarta, Jesús Lomas-García, F. Javier Ibáñez-Plágaro, J. Javier Fernández-Fernández, Teresa Ribas Ariño and José García-Cosamalón

Giant-cell granuloma is a benign and nonneoplastic lesion with an expansive and locally destructive behavior. It typically involves the mandible and the maxilla. Only 1 case arising from the odontoid process of the axis has been reported previously. The authors report on a 64-year-old man with a giant-cell granuloma of the axis. They review this uncommon entity, emphasizing the complexity of differentiating between this lesion and other giant-cell tumors.

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Juan Martino, Enrique Marco de Lucas, Francisco Javier Ibáñez-Plágaro, José Manuel Valle-Folgueral and Alfonso Vázquez-Barquero

Foix-Chavany-Marie syndrome (FCMS) is a rare type of suprabulbar palsy characterized by an automaticvoluntary dissociation of the orofacial musculature. Here, the authors report an original case of FCMS that occurred intraoperatively while resecting the pars opercularis of the inferior frontal gyrus.

This 25-year-old right-handed man with an incidentally diagnosed right frontotemporoinsular tumor underwent surgery using an asleep-awake-asleep technique with direct cortical and subcortical electrical stimulation and a transopercular approach to the insula. While resecting the anterior part of the pars opercularis the patient suffered sudden anarthria and bilateral facial weakness. He was unable to speak or show his teeth on command, but he was able to voluntarily move his upper and lower limbs. This syndrome lasted for 8 days. Postoperative diffusion tensor imaging tractography revealed that connections of the pars opercularis of the right inferior frontal gyrus with the frontal aslant tract (FAT) and arcuate fasciculus (AF) were damaged.

This case supplies evidence for localizing the structural substrate of FCMS. It was possible, for the first time in the literature, to accurately correlate the occurrence of FCMS to the resection of connections between the FAT and AF, and the right pars opercularis of the inferior frontal gyrus. The FAT has been recently described, but it may be an important connection to mediate supplementary motor area control of orofacial movement. The present case also contributes to our knowledge of complication avoidance in operculoinsular surgery. A transopercular approach to insuloopercular gliomas can generate FCMS, especially in cases of previous contralateral lesions. The prognosis is favorable, but the patient should be informed of this particular hazard, and the surgeon should anticipate the surgical strategy in case the syndrome occurs intraoperatively in an awake patient.

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A. Martina Messing-Jünger, Javier Ibáñez, Fabio Calbucci, Maurice Choux, Gabriel Lena, Iradj Mohsenipour and Frank Van Calenbergh


The goal of this study was to assess the effectiveness and handling characteristics of a dura substitute composed of two outer layers of expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and a middle layer consisting of an elastomeric fluoropolymer.


In a prospective multicenter study, the dura substitute was implanted using a standard technique in 119 patients undergoing cranial or spinal surgery requiring duraplasty. Intraoperative assessments of the dura patch consisted of testing for cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage employing the Valsalva maneuver and a surgeon’s standard evaluation of the handling characteristics of the device. Postoperative assessments conducted during a mean follow-up time of 15.7 months (range 0.3–45.6 months) consisted of physical examinations, routine computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance (MR) imaging studies, and histological studies of any removed dura patches.

The mean age of the 119 patients was 40 years (range < 1–81 years). The dura substitute was implanted cranially in 102 patients and spinally in 17. Intraoperative assessment including the Valsalva maneuver led to application of additional sutures in 17 patients. Handling features were rated very good to excellent. Postoperative clinical evaluation resulted in 79 excellent and 18 good results. Imaging studies (MR imaging studies in 69 patients and CT studies in 34 patients) showed no adhesions in 87 patients and minimal adhesions in seven patients (the dura was not visualized in nine patients). Postoperative complications occurred in 12 patients. There were six cases of CSF leakage, three cases of extradural hematoma, one case of arachnoid fibrosis after decompression of a Chiari malformation Type I, and two cases of infection. Eight (7%) of these complications were potentially related to the dura patch.


In a large, multicenter clinical study of the use of an expanded-PTFE–containing dura substitute, the device was found to be easy to handle and implant. No serious dura patch–related intraoperative adverse events were observed. Postoperatively, there were no major sealing problems or long-term complications. In two cases the patch had to be removed due to fibrosis and infection. The three-layer polymer dura substitute appears to be safe and effective in minimizing CSF leakage and adhesion formation, and its use avoids any risk of prion disease transmission.

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Javier Ibañez, Fuat Arikan, Salvador Pedraza, Esther Sánchez, Maria A. Poca, David Rodriguez and Enrique Rubio

Object. The aims of this study were to analyze the relevance of risk factors in mild head injury (MHI) by studying the possibility of establishing prediction models based on these factors and to evaluate the reliability of the clinical guidelines proposed for the management of MHI.

Methods. A series of 1101 patients with MHI were prospectively enrolled in this study. In all cases clinical data were collected and a computerized tomography (CT) scan was obtained. The relationship between clinical findings and the presence of intracranial lesions was studied to establish prediction models based on logistic regression and recursive partitioning analysis. Recently proposed guidelines and recommendations for the treatment of MHI were selected, calculating their diagnostic efficiency when applying each of them to our series.

The incidence of acute intracranial lesions was 7.5% (83 patients). A Glasgow Coma Scale score of 14, loss of consciousness, vomiting, headache, signs of basilar skull fracture, neurological deficit, coagulopathies, hydrocephalus treated with shunt insertion, associated extracranial lesions, and patient age greater than 65 years were identified as independent risk factors. Prediction models built on clinical variables were able to indicate patients with clinically important lesions, but failed to achieve 100% sensitivity in the detection of all patients with CT scans positive for intracranial lesions within reasonable specificity limits.

Conclusions. Clinical variables are insufficient to predict all cases of intracranial lesions following MHI, although they can be used to detect patients with relevant injuries. Avoiding systematic CT scan indication implies a rate of misdiagnosis that should be known and assumed when planning treatment in these patients by using guidelines based on clinical parameters.

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Jon Pérez-Bárcena, Catalina Crespí, Guillem Frontera, Juan Antonio Llompart-Pou, Osman Salazar, Victor Goliney, Javier Ibáñez, M. Ross Bullock and Juan Pablo de Rivero Vaccari


The objectives of this study were to evaluate levels of inflammasome-signaling proteins in serum and CSF of patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI), and to correlate these protein levels with intracranial pressure (ICP) and clinical outcomes at 6 months after injury.


This is a prospective and observational study in patients with moderate and severe TBI who required an external ventricular drain as part of their treatment. Serum and CSF samples were collected 3 times a day for the first 5 days after TBI. The authors have determined the protein concentration of caspase-1 in the CSF and serum of patients with TBI by using commercially available enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. The ICP value was recorded hourly. The 6-month outcome was assessed using the Glasgow Outcome Scale–Extended.


A total of 21 patients were included in this study, and a total of 234 paired serum-CSF samples were analyzed. The area under the curve (AUC) value of caspase-1 in CSF during the 5-day period was 2452.9 pg/mL·hr in the group of patients with high ICP vs 617.6 pg/mL·hr in the patients with low ICP. The differences were mainly on day 2 (19.7 pg/mL vs 1.8 pg/mL; p = 0.06) and day 3 (13.9 pg/mL vs 1 pg/mL; p = 0.05). The AUC value of caspase in CSF during the 5-day period was 1918.9 pg/mL·hr in the group of patients with poor outcome versus 924.5 pg/mL·hr in the patients with good outcome. The protein levels of caspase-1 in CSF were higher in patients with unfavorable outcomes during the first 96 hours after TBI.


In this cohort of patients with TBI who were admitted to the neurosurgical ICU, the inflammasome protein caspase-1 is increased in the CSF of patients with high ICP, especially on days 2 and 3 after TBI. Also the protein levels of caspase-1 in CSF were higher in patients with poor outcome during the first 96 hours after TBI. Moreover, not only the absolute value of caspase-1 in CSF but also its trend is associated with poor outcomes.

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Pedro A. Gómez, Javier de-la-Cruz, David Lora, Luis Jiménez-Roldán, Gregorio Rodríguez-Boto, Rosario Sarabia, Juan Sahuquillo, Roberto Lastra, Jesus Morera, Eglis Lazo, Jaime Dominguez, Javier Ibañez, Marta Brell, Adolfo de-la-Lama, Ramiro D. Lobato and Alfonso Lagares


Traumatic brain injury (TBI) represents a large health and economic burden. Because of the inability of previous randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on TBI to demonstrate the expected benefit of reducing unfavorable outcomes, the IMPACT (International Mission on Prognosis and Analysis of Clinical Trials in TBI) and CRASH (Corticosteroid Randomisation After Significant Head Injury) studies provided new methods for performing prognostic studies of TBI. This study aimed to develop and externally validate a prognostic model for early death (within 48 hours). The secondary aim was to identify patients who were more likely to succumb to an early death to limit their inclusion in RCTs and to improve the efficiency of RCTs.


The derivation cohort was recruited at 1 center, Hospital 12 de Octubre, Madrid (1990–2003, 925 patients). The validation cohort was recruited in 2004–2006 from 7 study centers (374 patients). The eligible patients had suffered closed severe TBIs. The study outcome was early death (within 48 hours post-TBI). The predictors were selected using logistic regression modeling with bootstrapping techniques, and a penalized reduction was used. A risk score was developed based on the regression coefficients of the variables included in the final model.


In the validation set, the final model showed a predictive ability of 50% (Nagelkerke R2), with an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 89% and an acceptable calibration (goodness-of-fit test, p = 0.32). The final model included 7 variables, and it was used to develop a risk score with a range from 0 to 20 points. Age provided 0, 1, 2, or 3 points depending on the age group; motor score provided 0 points, 2 (untestable), or 3 (no response); pupillary reactivity, 0, 2 (1 pupil reacted), or 6 (no pupil reacted); shock, 0 (no) or 2 (yes); subarachnoid hemorrhage, 0 or 1 (severe deposit); cisternal status, 0 or 3 (compressed/absent); and epidural hematoma, 0 (yes) or 2 (no). Based on the risk of early death estimated with the model, 4 risk of early death groups were established: low risk, sum score 0–3 (< 1% predicted mortality); moderate risk, sum score 4–8 (predicted mortality between 1% and 10%); high risk, sum score 9–12 (probability of early death between 10% and 50%); and very high risk, sum score 13–20 (early mortality probability > 50%). This score could be used for selecting patients for clinical studies. For example, if patients with very high risk scores were excluded from our study sample, the patients included (eligibility score < 13) would represent 80% of the original sample and only 23% of the patients who died early.


The combination of Glasgow Coma Scale score, CT scanning results, and secondary insult data into a prognostic score improved the prediction of early death and the classification of TBI patients.