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Feng Wan, Ling Li, Jingcao Chen, Jian Chen, Ting Lei, Delin Xue, Hongquan Niu, Kai Shu, Ping Zhang, Zhengming Yang and Yuping Wang

Object

The authors performed a study to investigate the clinical manifestations, treatment strategies, and possible pathogenesis of conus medullaris schistosomiasis.

Methods

Six cases collected from the authors’ experience and four cases reported in the literature were studied retrospectively for clinical manifestations, treatment outcomes, and prognosis. All patients experienced progressive lower-extremity weakness and functional bowel and bladder impairment. Although the magnetic resonance (MR) imaging results suggested the presence of a conus medullaris tumor, schistosomiasis was diagnosed based on pathological results obtained in the 10 patients. The results of surgery followed by pyquiton and hormone treatment confirmed the diagnosis, and the patients’ prognoses were good.

Conclusions

This pathological entity is predominantly found in adults, and the clinical manifestations have no specificity, although the MR imaging may provide some clues. As a form of ectopic schistosomiasis, conus medullaris schistosomiasis deserves special consideration and further exploration. If an early diagnosis can be made and pyquiton and hormone therapy is given, surgery can be avoided and the prognosis will remain good.

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Kai-Bing Tian, Jing-Jie Zheng, Jun-Peng Ma, Shu-Yu Hao, Liang Wang, Li-Wei Zhang, Zhen Wu, Jun-Ting Zhang and Da Li

OBJECTIVE

The natural history of cerebral cavernous malformations (CMs) has been widely studied, but the clinical course of untreated thalamic CMs is largely unknown. Hemorrhage of these lesions can be devastating. The authors undertook this study to obtain a prospective hemorrhage rate and provide a better understanding of the prognosis of untreated thalamic CMs.

METHODS

This longitudinal cohort study included patients with thalamic CMs who were diagnosed between 2000 and 2015. Clinical data were recorded, radiological studies were extensively reviewed, and follow-up evaluations were performed.

RESULTS

A total of 121 patients were included in the study (56.2% female), with a mean follow-up duration of 3.6 years. The overall annual hemorrhage rate (subsequent to the initial presentation) was calculated to be 9.7% based on the occurrence of 42 hemorrhages over 433.1 patient-years. This rate was highest in patients (n = 87) who initially presented with hemorrhage and focal neurological deficits (FNDs) (14.1%) (χ2 = 15.358, p < 0.001), followed by patients (n = 19) with hemorrhage but without FND (4.5%) and patients (n = 15) without hemorrhage regardless of symptoms (1.2%). The initial patient presentations of hemorrhage with FND (hazard ratio [HR] 2.767, 95% CI 1.336–5.731, p = 0.006) and associated developmental venous anomaly (DVA) (HR 2.510, 95% CI 1.275–4.942, p = 0.008) were identified as independent hemorrhage risk factors. The annual hemorrhage rate was significantly higher in patients with hemorrhagic pres entation at diagnosis (11.7%, p = 0.004) or DVA (15.7%, p = 0.002). Compared with the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) score at diagnosis (mean 2.2), the final mRS score (mean 2.0) was improved in 37 patients (30.6%), stable in 59 patients (48.8%), and worse in 25 patients (20.7%). Lesion size (odds ratio [OR] per 0.1 cm increase 3.410, 95% CI 1.272–9.146, p = 0.015) and mRS score at diagnosis (OR per 1 point increase 3.548, 95% CI 1.815–6.937, p < 0.001) were independent adverse risk factors for poor neurological outcome (mRS score ≥ 2). Patients experiencing hemorrhage after the initial ictus (OR per 1 ictus increase 6.923, 95% CI 3.023–15.855, p < 0.001) had a greater chance of worsened neurological status.

CONCLUSIONS

This study verified the adverse predictors for hemorrhage and functional outcomes of thalamic CMs and demonstrated an overall annual symptomatic hemorrhage rate of 9.7% after the initial presentation. These findings and the mode of initial presentation are useful for clinicians and patients when selecting an appropriate treatment, although the tertiary referral bias of the series should be taken into account.

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Shoujia Sun, Junwen Wang, Mingxin Zhu, Rajluxmee Beejadhursing, Pan Gao, Xiaojing Zhang, Liwu Jiao, Wei Jiang, Changshu Ke and Kai Shu

OBJECTIVE

Reports on supratentorial extraventricular ependymoma (STE) are relatively rare. The object of this study was to analyze the clinical, radiological, and histological features and treatment outcomes of 14 patients with STE.

METHODS

Overall, 227 patients with ependymoma underwent surgical treatment in the authors’ department between January 2010 and June 2015; 14 of these patients had STE. Data on clinical presentation, radiological studies, histopathological findings, surgical strategies, and treatment outcomes in these 14 cases were retrospectively analyzed.

RESULTS

The patients consisted of 6 women and 8 men (sex ratio 0.75). Mean age at diagnosis was 24.5 ± 13.5 years (range 3–48 years). Tumors were predominantly located in the frontal and temporal lobes (5 and 4 cases, respectively). Typical radiological features were mild to moderate heterogeneous tumor enhancements on contrast-enhanced MRI. Other radiological features included well-circumscribed, “popcorn” enhancement and no distinct adjoining brain edema. Gross-total resection was achieved in 12 patients, while subtotal removal was performed in 2. Radiotherapy was administered in 7 patients after surgery. Seven tumors were classified as WHO Grade II and the other 7 were verified as WHO Grade III. The mean follow-up period was 22.6 months (range 8–39 months). There were 3 patients with recurrence, and 2 of these patients died.

CONCLUSIONS

Supratentorial extraventricular ependymoma has atypical clinical presentations, various radiological features, and heterogeneous histological forms; therefore, definitive diagnosis can be difficult. Anaplastic STE shows malignant biological behavior, a higher recurrence rate, and a relatively poor prognosis. Gross-total resection with or without postoperative radiotherapy is currently the optimal treatment for STE.

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Xueyan Wan, Chao Gan, Chao You, Ting Fan, Suojun Zhang, Huaqiu Zhang, Sheng Wang, Kai Shu, Xiong Wang and Ting Lei

OBJECTIVE

The intracranial hematoma volume in patients with traumatic brain injury is a key parameter for the determination of the management approach and outcome. Apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 is reported to be a risk factor for larger hematoma volume, which might contribute to a poor outcome. However, whether APOE ε4 is related to progressive hemorrhagic injury (PHI), a common occurrence in the clinical setting, remains unclear. In this study, the authors aimed to investigate the association between the APOE genotype and occurrence of PHI.

METHODS

This prospective study included a cohort of 123 patients with traumatic intracerebral hemorrhage who initially underwent conservative treatment. These patients were assigned to the PHI or non-PHI group according to the follow-up CT scan. A polymerase chain reaction and sequencing method were carried out to determine the APOE genotype. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was applied to identify predictors of PHI.

RESULTS

The overall frequency of the alleles was as follows: E2/2, 0%; E2/3, 14.6%; E3/3, 57.8%; E2/4, 2.4%; E3/4, 22.8%; and E4/4, 2.4%. Thirty-four patients carried at least one allele of ε4. In this study 60 patients (48.8%) experienced PHI, and the distribution of the alleles was as follows: E2/2, 0%; E2/3, 5.7%; E3/3, 22.8%; E2/4, 2.4%; E3/4, 16.3%; and E4/4, 1.6%, which was significantly different from that in the non-PHI group (p = 0.008). Additionally, the late operation rate in the PHI group was significantly higher than that in the non-PHI group (24.4% vs 11.4%, p = 0.002). Multivariate logistic regression identified APOE ε4 (OR 5.14, 95% CI 2.40–11.62), an elevated international normalized ratio (OR 3.57, 95% CI 1.61–8.26), and higher glucose level (≥ 10 mmol/L) (OR 3.88, 95% CI 1.54–10.77) as independent risk factors for PHI. Moreover, APOE ε4 was not a risk factor for the coagulopathy and outcome of the patients with traumatic intracerebral hemorrhage.

CONCLUSIONS

The presence of APOE ε4, an elevated international normalized ratio, and a higher glucose level (≥ 10 mmol/L) are predictors of PHI. Additionally, APOE ε4 is not associated with traumatic coagulopathy and patient outcome.