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James K. Liu, Nicole A. Silva, Ilesha A. Sevak and Jean Anderson Eloy

OBJECTIVE

There has been much debate regarding the optimal surgical approach for resecting olfactory groove meningiomas (OGMs). In this paper, the authors analyzed the factors involved in approach selection and reviewed the surgical outcomes in a series of OGMs.

METHODS

A retrospective review of 28 consecutive OGMs from a prospective database was conducted. Each tumor was treated via one of 3 approaches: transbasal approach (n = 15), pure endoscopic endonasal approach (EEA; n = 5), and combined (endoscope-assisted) transbasal-EEA (n = 8).

RESULTS

The mean tumor volume was greatest in the transbasal (92.02 cm3) and combined (101.15 cm3) groups. Both groups had significant lateral dural extension over the orbits (transbasal 73.3%, p < 0.001; combined 100%), while the transbasal group had the most cerebral edema (73.3%, p < 0.001) and vascular involvement (66.7%, p < 0.001), and the least presence of a cortical cuff (33.3%, p = 0.019). All tumors in the combined group were recurrent tumors that invaded into the sinonasal cavity. The purely EEA group had the smallest mean tumor volume (33.33 cm3), all with a cortical cuff and no lateral dural extension. Gross-total resection was achieved in 80% of transbasal, 100% of EEA, and 62.5% of combined cases. Near-total resection (> 95%) was achieved in 20% of transbasal and 37.5% of combined cases, all due to tumor adherence to the critical neurovascular structures. The rate of CSF leakage was 0% in the transbasal and combined groups, and there was 1 leak in the EEA group (20%), resulting in an overall CSF leakage rate of 3.6%. Olfaction was preserved in 66.7% in the transbasal group. There was no significant difference in length of stay or 30-day readmission rate between the 3 groups. The mean modified Rankin Scale score was 0.79 after the transbasal approach, 2.0 after EEA, and 2.4 after the combined approach (p = 0.0604). The mean follow-up was 14.5 months (range 1–76 months).

CONCLUSIONS

The transbasal approach provided the best clinical outcomes with the lowest rate of complications for large tumors (> 40 mm) and for smaller tumors (< 40 mm) with intact olfaction. The role of EEA appears to be limited to smaller, appropriately selected tumors in which olfaction is already absent. EEA also plays an important adjunctive role when combined with the transbasal approach for recurrent OGMs invading the sinonasal cavity. Careful patient selection using an individualized, tailored strategy is important to optimize surgical outcomes.

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Nicole A. Silva, Belinda Shao, Michael J. Sylvester, Jean Anderson Eloy and Chirag D. Gandhi

OBJECTIVE

Observation and neurosurgical intervention for unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) in the elderly population is rapidly increasing. Cerebral aneurysm coiling (CACo) is favored over cerebral aneurysm clipping (CAC) in elderly patients, yet some elderly individuals still undergo CAC. The cost-effectiveness of treating UIAs requires further exploration. Understanding the effect of intervention on hospital charges and length of stay (LOS) as well as perioperative mortality and complications can further shed light on its economic impact. The purpose of this study was to analyze the cost and perioperative outcomes of UIAs in elderly patients (≥ 65 years of age) after CACo or CAC intervention.

METHODS

Retrospective cohorts of CACo and CAC admissions were extracted from National (Nationwide) Inpatient Sample data obtained between 2002 and 2013, forming parallel intervention groups to compare the following outcomes between elderly and nonelderly patients: average LOS and mean hospital admission costs, in-hospital mortality, and complications. Covariates included sex, race or ethnicity, and comorbidities.

RESULTS

Elderly patients undergoing CAC experienced an average LOS of 8.0 days, whereas elderly patients undergoing CACo stayed an average of 3.2 days. The mean hospital charges incurred during admission totaled $95,960 in the elderly patients who underwent CAC versus $87,960 in the ones who underwent CACo. Elderly patients in whom CAC was performed had a 2.2% rate of in-hospital mortality, with a 2.6 greater adjusted odds of in-hospital mortality than nonelderly patients treated with CAC. In contrast, elderly patients who underwent CACo had a 1.36 greater adjusted odds of in-hospital mortality than their nonelderly counterparts. Compared to nonelderly patients receiving both interventions, elderly individuals had a significantly higher prevalence of various comorbidities and incidence of complications. Elderly patients who received CAC experienced a 10.3% incidence rate of perioperative stroke, whereas their CACo counterparts experienced this complication at a rate of 3.5%. Elderly patients treated with CAC had greater odds of perioperative acute renal failure, whereas their CACo counterparts had greater odds of perioperative deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.

CONCLUSIONS

Intervention with CAC and CACo in the elderly is resource intensive and is associated with higher risk than in the nonelderly. Those deciding between intervention and conservative management should consider these risks and costs, especially the 2.2% postoperative mortality rate associated with CAC in the elderly population. Further comparative cost-effectiveness research is needed to weigh these costs and outcomes against those of conservative management.

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Rosemary T. Behmer Hansen, Nicole A. Silva, Rebecca Cuevas, Samantha Y. Cerasiello, Angela M. Richardson, Antonios Mammis and Anil Nanda

OBJECTIVE

Current data on fellowship choice and completion by neurosurgical residents are limited, especially in relation to gender, scholarly productivity, and career progression. The objective of this study was to determine gender differences in the selection of fellowship training and subsequent scholarly productivity and career progression.

METHODS

The authors conducted a quantitative analysis of the fellowship training information of practicing US academic neurosurgeons. Information was extracted from publicly available websites, the Scopus database, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Open Payments website.

RESULTS

Of 1641 total academic neurosurgeons, 1403 (85.5%) were fellowship trained. There were disproportionately more men (89.9%) compared to women (10.1%). A higher proportion of women completed fellowships than men (p = 0.004). Proportionally, significantly more women completed fellowships in pediatrics (p < 0.0001), neurooncology (p = 0.012), and critical care/trauma (p = 0.001), while significantly more men completed a spine fellowship (p = 0.012). Within those who were fellowship trained, the academic rank of professor was significantly more commonly held by men (p = 0.001), but assistant professor was held significantly more often by women (p = 0.017). The fellowships with the largest mean h-indices were functional/stereotactic, pediatrics, and critical care/trauma. Despite more women completing neurooncology and pediatric fellowships, men had significantly greater h-indices in these subspecialties compared to women. Women had more industry funding awards than men in pediatrics (p < 0.0001), while men had more in spine (p = 0.023).

CONCLUSIONS

Women were found to have higher rates for fellowship completion compared with their male counterparts, yet had lower scholarly productivity in every subspecialty. Fellowship choice remains unequally distributed between genders, and scholarly productivity and career progression varies between fellowship choice.