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Free access

David R. Santiago-Dieppa, Brian R. Hirshman, Arvin Wali, J. Scott Pannell, Yasaman Alam, Scott Olson, Vincent J. Cheung, Jeffrey A. Steinberg, Mihir Gupta, and Alexander A. Khalessi

OBJECTIVE

Carotid artery stenting (CAS) has antihypertensive effects, but the durability and degree of this response remain variable. The authors propose that this clinical variability is a function of the presence or absence of a complete circle of Willis (COW). Incomplete COWs perfuse through a higher-resistance pial collateral pathway, and therefore patients may require a higher mean arterial pressure (MAP). Carotid artery revascularization in these patients would reduce the end-organ collateral demand that has been hypothesized to drive the MAP response.

METHODS

Using a retrospective, nonrandomized within-subject case-control design, the authors compared the postoperative effects of CAS in patients with and without a complete COW by using changes in MAP and antihypertensive medication as end points. They recorded MAP and antihypertensive medications 3 months prior to surgery, preoperatively, immediately postoperatively, and at the 3-month follow-up.

RESULTS

Data were collected from 64 consecutive patients undergoing CAS. Patients without a complete COW (25%) were more likely to demonstrate a decrease in BP response to stenting (i.e., a drop in MAP of 10 mm Hg and/or a reduction or cessation of BP medications at 3 months postoperatively). Of the patients in the incomplete COW cohort, 75% had this outcome, whereas of those in the complete COW cohort, only 41% had it (p < 0.041). These findings remained statistically significant in a logistic regression analysis for possible confounders (p < 0.024). A receiver operating curve analysis of preoperative data indicated that a MAP > 96.3 mm Hg was 55.5% sensitive and 57.4% specific for predicting a complete COW and that patients with a MAP > 96.3 mm Hg were more likely to demonstrate a good MAP decrease following CAS (p < 0.0092).

CONCLUSIONS

CAS is associated with a significant decrease in MAP and/or a reduction/cessation in BP medications in patients in whom a complete COW is absent.

Free access

Peter Abraham, J. Scott Pannell, David R. Santiago-Dieppa, Vincent Cheung, Jeffrey Steinberg, Arvin Wali, Mihir Gupta, Robert C. Rennert, Roland R. Lee, and Alexander A. Khalessi

OBJECTIVE

In vivo and in vitro studies have demonstrated histological evidence of iatrogenic endothelial injury after stent retriever thrombectomy. However, noncontrast vessel wall (VW)–MRI is insufficient to demonstrate vessel injury. Authors of this study prospectively evaluated iatrogenic endothelial damage after stent retriever thrombectomy in humans by utilizing high-resolution contrast-enhanced VW-MRI. Characterization of VW-MRI changes in vessels subject to mechanical injury from thrombectomy may allow better understanding of the biological effects of this intervention.

METHODS

The authors prospectively recruited 11 patients for this study. The treatment group included 6 postthrombectomy patients and the control group included 5 subjects undergoing MRI for nonvascular indications. All subjects were evaluated on a Signa HD× 3.0-T MRI scanner with an 8-channel head coil. Both pre- and postcontrast T1-weighted Cube VW images as well as MR angiograms were acquired. Sequences obtained for evaluation of the brain parenchyma included diffusion-weighted, gradient echo, and T2-FLAIR imaging. Two independent neuroradiologists, who were blinded to the treatment status of each patient, determined the presence of VW enhancement. Patient age, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score on presentation, location of occlusion, stroke etiology, type of device used, number of device deployments, Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction (TICI) reperfusion score, stroke volume, and 90-day modified Rankin Scale score were also noted.

RESULTS

Postcontrast T1-weighted VW enhancement was detected in the M2 segment in 100% of the thrombectomy patients, in the M1 segment in 83%, and in the internal carotid artery in 50%. One patient also demonstrated A1 segment enhancement, which was attributable to thrombectomy treatment of that vessel segment during the same procedure. None of the control patients demonstrated VW enhancement of their intracranial vasculature on T1-weighted images.

CONCLUSIONS

The study findings suggest that VW injury incurred during stent retriever thrombectomy can be reliably detected utilizing contrast-enhanced 3-T VW-MRI. The results further demonstrate that endothelial injury is associated with oversizing of stent retrievers relative to the treated vessel. Further studies are needed to evaluate the clinical significance of endothelial injury and to characterize the differential effects of various devices.

Open access

Alvin Wong, Arvin R. Wali, Bryan Ryba, Mihir Gupta, Michael L. Levy, and Amanda A. Gosman

Unicoronal craniosynostosis is notoriously difficult to treat, with long-term studies demonstrating high rates of relapse and the need for reoperation using open fronto-orbital advancement. Applying the principles of distraction osteogenesis to cranial vault remodeling has demonstrated promising short-term results that compare favorably with traditional methods, with simultaneous correction of both frontofacial and endocranial morphology, along with significant increases in intracranial volume. Here, the authors demonstrate their technique for rotation flap distraction osteogenesis in the treatment of unicoronal synostosis and provide case examples.

The video can be found here: https://vimeo.com/519505008.

Restricted access

Mark Bigder, Omar Choudhri, Mihir Gupta, Santosh Gummidipundi, Summer S. Han, Ephraim W. Church, Steven D. Chang, Richard P. Levy, Huy M. Do, Michael P. Marks, and Gary K. Steinberg

OBJECTIVE

Microsurgical resection of arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) can be aided by staged treatment consisting of stereotactic radiosurgery followed by resection in a delayed fashion. This approach is particularly useful for high Spetzler-Martin (SM) grade lesions because radiosurgery can reduce flow through the AVM, downgrade the SM rating, and induce histopathological changes that additively render the AVM more manageable for resection. The authors present their 28-year experience in managing AVMs with adjunctive radiosurgery followed by resection.

METHODS

The authors retrospectively reviewed records of patients treated for cerebral AVMs at their institution between January 1990 and August 2019. All patients who underwent stereotactic radiosurgery (with or without embolization), followed by resection, were included in the study. Of 1245 patients, 95 met the eligibility criteria. Univariate and multivariate regression analyses were performed to assess relationships between key variables and clinical outcomes.

RESULTS

The majority of lesions treated (53.9%) were high grade (SM grade IV–V), 31.5% were intermediate (SM grade III), and 16.6% were low grade (SM grade I–II). Hemorrhage was the initial presenting sign in half of all patients (49.5%). Complete resection was achieved among 84% of patients, whereas 16% had partial resection, the majority of whom received additional radiosurgery. Modified Rankin Scale (mRS) scores of 0–2 were achieved in 79.8% of patients, and 20.2% had poor (mRS scores 3–6) outcomes. Improved (44.8%) or stable (19%) mRS scores were observed among 63.8% of patients, whereas 36.2% had a decline in mRS scores. This includes 22 patients (23.4%) with AVM hemorrhage and 6 deaths (6.7%) outside the perioperative period but prior to AVM obliteration.

CONCLUSIONS

Stereotactic radiosurgery is a useful adjunct in the presurgical management of cerebral AVMs. Multimodal therapy allowed for high rates of AVM obliteration and acceptable morbidity rates, despite the predominance of high-grade lesions in this series of patients.

Free access

Mihir Gupta, Tiffany M. Chan, David R. Santiago-Dieppa, Anudeep Yekula, Carlos E. Sanchez, Jennifer D. Elster, John R. Crawford, Michael L. Levy, and David D. Gonda

OBJECTIVE

Biopsies of tumors located in deep midline structures require highly accurate stereotaxy to safely obtain lesional tissue suitable for molecular and histological analysis. Versatile platforms are needed to meet a broad range of technical requirements and surgeon preferences. The authors present their institutional experience with the robotic stereotactic assistance (ROSA) system in a series of robot-assisted biopsies of pediatric brainstem and thalamic tumors.

METHODS

A retrospective analysis was performed of 22 consecutive patients who underwent 23 stereotactic biopsies of brainstem or thalamic lesions using the ROSA platform at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego between December 2015 and January 2020.

RESULTS

The ROSA platform enabled rapid acquisition of lesional tissue across various combinations of approaches, registration techniques, and positioning. No permanent deficits, major adverse outcomes, or deaths were encountered. One patient experienced temporary cranial neuropathy, and 3 developed small asymptomatic hematomas. The diagnostic success rate of the ROSA system was 91.3%.

CONCLUSIONS

Robot-assisted stereotactic biopsy of these lesions may be safely performed using the ROSA platform. This experience comprises the largest clinical series to date dedicated to robot-assisted biopsies of brainstem and diencephalic tumors.

Restricted access

Mihir Gupta, Tiffany M. Chan, David R. Santiago-Dieppa, Anudeep Yekula, Carlos E. Sanchez, Jennifer D. Elster, John R. Crawford, Michael L. Levy, and David D. Gonda

OBJECTIVE

Biopsies of tumors located in deep midline structures require highly accurate stereotaxy to safely obtain lesional tissue suitable for molecular and histological analysis. Versatile platforms are needed to meet a broad range of technical requirements and surgeon preferences. The authors present their institutional experience with the robotic stereotactic assistance (ROSA) system in a series of robot-assisted biopsies of pediatric brainstem and thalamic tumors.

METHODS

A retrospective analysis was performed of 22 consecutive patients who underwent 23 stereotactic biopsies of brainstem or thalamic lesions using the ROSA platform at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego between December 2015 and January 2020.

RESULTS

The ROSA platform enabled rapid acquisition of lesional tissue across various combinations of approaches, registration techniques, and positioning. No permanent deficits, major adverse outcomes, or deaths were encountered. One patient experienced temporary cranial neuropathy, and 3 developed small asymptomatic hematomas. The diagnostic success rate of the ROSA system was 91.3%.

CONCLUSIONS

Robot-assisted stereotactic biopsy of these lesions may be safely performed using the ROSA platform. This experience comprises the largest clinical series to date dedicated to robot-assisted biopsies of brainstem and diencephalic tumors.

Restricted access

Mihir Gupta, Varun Sagi, Aditya Mittal, Anudeep Yekula, Devan Hawkins, Justin Shimizu, Pate J. Duddleston, Kathleen Thomas, Steven J. Goetsch, John F. Alksne, David W. Hodgens, Kenneth Ott, Kenneth T. Shimizu, Christopher Duma, and Sharona Ben-Haim

OBJECTIVE

Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) is an established surgical option for the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia (TN), particularly for high-risk surgical candidates and those with recurrent pain. However, outcomes after three or more GKRS treatments have rarely been reported. Herein, the authors reviewed outcomes among patients who had undergone three or more GKRS procedures for recurrent TN.

METHODS

The authors conducted a multicenter retrospective analysis of patients who had undergone at least three GKRS treatments for TN between July 1997 and April 2019 at two different institutions. Clinical characteristics, radiosurgical dosimetry and technique, pain outcomes, and complications were reviewed. Pain outcomes were scored on the Barrow Neurological Institute (BNI) scale, including time to pain relief (BNI score ≤ III) and recurrence (BNI score > III).

RESULTS

A total of 30 patients were identified, including 16 women and 14 men. Median pain duration prior to the first GKRS treatment was 10 years. Three patients (10%) had multiple sclerosis. Time to pain relief was longer after the third treatment (p = 0.0003), whereas time to pain recurrence was similar across each of the successive treatments (p = 0.842). Complete or partial pain relief was achieved in 93.1% of patients after the third treatment. The maximum pain relief achieved after the third treatment was significantly better among patients with no prior percutaneous procedures (p = 0.0111) and patients with shorter durations of pain before initiation of GKRS therapy (p = 0.0449). New or progressive facial sensory dysfunction occurred in 29% of patients after the third GKRS treatment and was reported as bothersome in 14%. One patient developed facial twitching, while another experienced persistent lacrimation. No statistically significant predictors of adverse effects following the third treatment were found. Over a median of 39 months of follow-up, 77% of patients maintained complete or partial pain relief. Three patients underwent a fourth GKRS treatment, including one who ultimately received five treatments; all of them reported sustained pain relief at the extended follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors describe the largest series to date of patients undergoing three or more GKRS treatments for refractory TN. A third treatment may produce outcomes similar to those of the first two treatments in terms of long-term pain relief, recurrence, and adverse effects.

Free access

Mihir Gupta, Allison Reichl, Luis Daniel Diaz-Aguilar, Pate J. Duddleston, Jamie S. Ullman, Karin M. Muraszko, Shelly D. Timmons, Isabelle M. Germano, Aviva Abosch, Jennifer A. Sweet, Susan C. Pannullo, Deborah L. Benzil, and Sharona Ben-Haim

OBJECTIVE

Despite recently heightened advocacy efforts relating to pregnancy and family leave policies in multiple surgical specialties, no studies to date have described female neurosurgeons’ experiences with childbearing. The AANS/CNS Section of Women in Neurosurgery created the Women and Pregnancy Task Force to ascertain female neurosurgeons’ experiences with and attitudes toward pregnancy and the role of family leave policies.

METHODS

A voluntary online 28-question survey examined the pregnancy experiences of female neurosurgeons and perceived barriers to childbearing. The survey was developed and electronically distributed to all members of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and Congress of Neurological Surgeons who self-identified as female in February 2016. Responses from female resident physicians, fellows, and current or retired practicing neurosurgeons were analyzed.

RESULTS

A total of 126 women (20.3%) responded to the survey; 57 participants (49%) already had children, and 39 (33%) planned to do so. Participants overwhelmingly had or planned to have children during the early practice and senior residency years. The most frequent obstacles experienced or anticipated included insufficient time to care for newborns (47% of women with children, 92% of women planning to have children), discrimination by coworkers (31% and 77%, respectively), and inadequate time for completion of board requirements (18% and 51%, respectively). There was substantial variability in family leave policies, and a minority of participants (35%) endorsed the presence of any formal policy at their institution. Respondents described myriad unique challenges associated with pregnancy and family leave.

CONCLUSIONS

Pregnancy and family leave pose significant challenges to the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women in neurosurgery. It is thus imperative to promote clear family leave policies for trainees and practitioners, address discrimination surrounding these topics, and encourage forethought and flexibility to tackle obstacles inherent in pregnancy and the early stages of child rearing.