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Roberto C. Heros

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Katsushige Watanabe, Nobuhito Saito, Makoto Taniguchi, Takaaki Kirino and Tomio Sasaki

Object. The frequency, nature, and history of subjective taste disturbance before and after vestibular schwannoma (VS) surgery was investigated.

Methods. Personal interviews were conducted in 108 patients with unilateral VS. Abnormalities in taste perception, either a significant reduction or a change in character, were experienced by 31 patients (28.7%) before surgery and by 37 (34.3%) after tumor removal. Preoperative taste disturbance worsened after surgery in five (16.1%) of the 31 patients, remained unchanged in eight (25.8%), improved in two (6.5%), and became normal in 16 (51.6%). Taste disturbance occurred postoperatively in 22 (28.6%) of 77 patients who had experienced no preoperative taste disturbance. The mean onset of the abnormality after resection was 1.1 ± 1.7 months. Postoperative taste disturbance resolved in 24 of the 37 patients (64.9%) within 1 year after onset.

Conclusions. Subjective taste disturbance was common before and after VS removal, and the natural history of this condition was very variable in the pre- and postoperative periods. All patients who undergo surgery for VS should receive appropriate counseling about the likelihood and course of postoperative complications, including dysfunction of the sensory component of the facial nerve.

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Keisuke Takai, Taichi Kin, Hiroshi Oyama, Masaaki Shojima and Nobuhito Saito

Object

There have been significant advances in understanding the angioarchitecture of spinal dural arteriovenous fistulas (AVFs). However, the major intradural retrograde venous drainage system has not been investigated in detail, including the most proximal sites of intradural radiculomedullary veins as they connect to the dura mater, which are the final targets of interruption in both microsurgical and endovascular treatments.

Methods

Between April 1984 and March 2011, 27 patients with 28 AVFs were treated for spinal dural AVFs at the authors' university hospital. The authors assessed vertebral levels of feeding arteries and dural AVFs by using conventional digital subtraction angiography. They also assessed 3D locations of the most proximal sites of intradural radiculomedullary veins and the 3D positional relationship between the major intradural retrograde venous drainage system and intradural neural structures, including the spinal cord, spinal nerves, and the artery of Adamkiewicz, by using operative video recordings plus 3D rotational angiography and/or 3D computer graphics. In addition, they statistically assessed the clinical results of 27 cases. Of these lesions, 23 were treated with open microsurgery and the rest were treated with endovascular methods.

Results

Feeding arteries consisted of T2–10 intercostal arteries with 19 lesions, T-12 subcostal arteries with 3 lesions, and L1–3 lumbar arteries with 6 lesions. The 3D locations of the targets of interruption (the most proximal sites of intradural radiculomedullary veins as they connect to the dura mater) were identified at the dorsolateral portion of the dura mater adjacent to dorsal roots in all 19 thoracic lesions, whereas they were identified at the ventrolateral portion of the dura mater adjacent to ventral roots in 7 (78%) of 9 cases of conus medullaris/lumbar lesions (p < 0.001). The major intradural retrograde venous drainage system was located dorsal to the spinal cord in all 19 thoracic lesions, whereas it was located ventral to the spinal cord in 4 (44%) of 9 cases of conus/lumbar lesions (p = 0.006). In 3 (11%) of 27 cases, AVFs had a common origin of the artery of Adamkiewicz. In 2 lumbar lesions, the artery of Adamkiewicz ascended very close to the vein because of its ventral location. Although all lesions were successfully obliterated without major complications and both gait and micturition status significantly improved (p = 0.005 and p = 0.015, respectively), conus/lumbar lesions needed careful differential diagnosis from ventral intradural perimedullary AVFs, because the ventral location of these lesions contradicted the Spetzler classification system.

Conclusions

The angioarchitecture of spinal dural AVFs in the thoracic region is strikingly different from that in conus/lumbar regions with regard to the intradural retrograde venous drainage system. One should keep in mind that spinal dural AVFs are not always dorsal types, especially in conus/lumbar regions.

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Soichi Oya, Kensuke Kawai, Hirofumi Nakatomi and Nobuhito Saito

Object

Techniques for the surgical treatment of meningioma have undergone many improvements since Simpson established the neurosurgical dogma for meningioma surgery in his seminal paper published in 1957. This study aims to assess the clinical significance and limitations of the Simpson grading system in relation to modern surgery for WHO Grade I benign meningiomas and to explore the potential of the cell proliferation index to complement the limitations in predicting their recurrence.

Methods

The surgical records of patients who underwent resection of intracranial meningiomas at the University of Tokyo Hospital between January 1995 and August 2010 were retrospectively analyzed. The authors investigated the relationships between recurrence-free survival (RFS) and Simpson grade or MIB-1 labeling index value.

Results

A total of 240 patients harboring 248 benign meningiomas were included in this study. Simpson Grade IV resection was associated with a significantly shorter RFS than Simpson Grade I, II, or III resection (p < 0.001), while no statistically significant difference was noted in RFS between Simpson Grades I, II, and III. Among meningiomas treated by Simpson Grade II and III resections, however, multivariate analysis revealed that an MIB-1 index of 3% or higher was associated with a significantly shorter time to recurrence.

Conclusions

The clinical significance of the different management strategies related to Simpson Grade I–III resection may have been diluted in the modern surgical era. The MIB-1 index can differentiate tumors with a high risk of recurrence, which could be beneficial for planning tailored optimal follow-up strategies. The results of this study appear to provide a significant backing for the recent shift in meningioma surgery from attempting aggressive resection to valuing the quality of the patient's life.

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Shunya Hanakita, Tomoyuki Koga, Masahiro Shin, Hiroshi Igaki and Nobuhito Saito

OBJECT

Although stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) has been accepted as a therapeutic option for arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) in children and adolescents, substantial data are still lacking regarding the outcomes of SRS for AVMs in this age group, especially long-term complications. This study aimed to clarify the long-term outcomes of SRS for the treatment of AVM in pediatric patients aged ≤ 18 years.

METHODS

Outcomes of 116 patients who were aged 4–18 years when they underwent SRS between 1990 and 2009 at the study institute were analyzed retrospectively.

RESULTS

The median follow-up period after SRS was 100 months, with 6 patients followed up for more than 20 years. Actuarial obliteration rates at 3 and 5 years after SRS were 68% and 88%, respectively. Five hemorrhages occurred in 851 patient-years of follow-up. The annual bleeding rate after SRS before obliteration was calculated as 1.3%, which decreased to 0.2% after obliteration. Shorter maximum nidus diameter (p = 0.02) and higher margin dose (p = 0.03) were associated with a higher obliteration rate. Ten patients experienced adverse events after SRS. Of them, 4 patients presented with delayed complications years after SRS (range 9–20 years after SRS).

CONCLUSIONS

SRS can reduce the risk of hemorrhage in pediatric and adolescent AVMs, with an acceptable risk of complications in the long term. However, adverse events such as expanding hematoma and radiation necrosis that can occur after substantial follow-up should be taken into account at the time that treatment decisions are made and informed consent is obtained.

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Takahiro Ota, Kensuke Kawai, Kyousuke Kamada, Taichi Kin and Nobuhito Saito

Object

Intraoperative monitoring of visual evoked potentials (VEPs) has been regarded as having limited significance for the preservation of visual function during neurosurgical procedures, mainly due to its poor spatial resolution and signal-to-noise ratio. The authors evaluated the usefulness of cortically recorded VEPs, instead of the usual scalp VEPs, as intraoperative monitoring focusing on the posterior visual pathway.

Methods

In 17 consecutive patients who underwent microsurgical procedures for lesions near the posterior visual pathway, cortical responses were recorded using 1-Hz flashing light-emitting diodes and subdural strip electrodes after induction of general anesthesia with sevoflurane or propofol. The detectability and waveform of the initial response, stability, and changes during microsurgical manipulations were analyzed in association with the position of electrodes and postoperative changes in visual function.

Results

Initial VEPs were detected in 82% of all patients. The VEPs were detected in 94% of patients without total hemianopia in whom electrodes were placed sufficiently near the occipital pole; in these cases the recordings were not significantly affected by anesthesia. The detectability rates of the negative peak before 100 msec (N1), positive peak ~ 100 msec (P100), and negative peak after 100 msec (N2) were 36, 50, and 100%, respectively. The mean latencies and amplitudes of N1, P100, and N2 were 90.0 ± 15.9 msec and 61.0 ± 64.0 μV, 103.9 ± 13.5 msec and 34.3 ± 38.6 μV, and 125.7 ± 12.2 msec and 44.9 ± 48.9 μV, respectively, showing great variability. In 11 patients, the initial waveforms of VEP remained stable during microsurgical procedures, and the visual status did not change postoperatively, while it disappeared in 2 patients who presented with postoperative hemianopia.

Conclusions

Direct recording from the visual cortices under general anesthesia achieved satisfactory detectability of the visual response to a light-emitting diode flashing light. Although the initial waveforms varied greatly among patients, they were stable during microsurgical procedures, and the changes were consistent with postoperative visual function. Intraoperative cortical VEP monitoring is a potentially useful procedure to monitor the functional integrity of the posterior visual pathway.

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Tomohiro Inoue, Kazuhiro Ohwaki, Akira Tamura, Kazuo Tsutsumi, Isamu Saito and Nobuhito Saito

Object

Although the mechanisms underlying neurocognitive changes after carotid endarterectomy (CEA) are poorly understood, intraoperative ischemia and postoperative hemodynamic changes may play a role.

Methods

Data from 81 patients who underwent unilateral CEA with routine shunt use for carotid artery stenosis were retrospectively evaluated. These patients underwent neuropsychological examinations (NPEs), including assessment by the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale–Third Edition and the Wechsler Memory Scale–Revised before and 6 months after CEA. Results of NPEs were converted into z scores, from which pre- and postoperative cognitive composite scores (CSpre and CSpost) were obtained. The association between the change of CS between pre- and postoperative NPEs (that is, CSpost − CSpre [CSpost – pre]) and various variables was assessed. These latter variables included ischemic or hemodynamic parameters such as 1) intraoperative hypoperfusion detected by somatosensory evoked potential (SSEP) change—that is, an SSEP amplitude reduction more than 50% and longer than 5 minutes (SSEP< 50%, > 5 min); 2) new lesions on postoperative diffusion-weighted imaging studies; and 3) preexisting hemodynamic impairment. Paired t-tests of the NPE scores were performed to determine the net effect of these factors on neurocognitive function at 6 months.

Results

A significant CSpost – pre decrease was observed in patients with SSEP< 50%, > 5 min when compared with those without SSEP< 50%, > 5 min (−0.225 vs 0.018; p = 0.012). Multiple regression analysis demonstrated that SSEP< 50%, > 5 min independently and negatively correlated with CSpost – pre (p = 0.0020). In the group-rate analysis, postoperative NPE scores were significantly improved relative to preoperative scores.

Conclusions

Hypoperfusion during cross-clamping, as verified by SSEP amplitude reduction, plays a significant role in the subtle decline in cognition following CEA. However, this detrimental effect was small, and various confounding factors were present. Based on these observations and the group-rate analysis, the authors conclude that successful unilateral CEA with routine shunt use does not adversely affect postoperative cognitive function.

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Tomohiro Inoue, Kazuhiro Ohwaki, Akira Tamura, Kazuo Tsutsumi, Isamu Saito and Nobuhito Saito

Object

The mechanisms underlying neurocognitive changes after surgical clipping of unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) are poorly understood. The aim of this study was to investigate factors that determine postoperative cognitive decline after UIA surgery.

Methods

Data from 109 patients who underwent surgical clipping of a UIA were retrospectively evaluated. These patients underwent neuropsychological examinations (NPEs), including assessment by the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Third Edition and the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised before and 6 months after surgical clipping of the UIA. Results of NPEs were converted into z scores, from which pre- and postoperative cognitive composite scores (CSpre and CSpost) were obtained. The association between the change in CS between pre- and postoperative NPEs (that is, CSpost − CSpre [CSpost − pre]) and various variables was assessed. These latter variables included surgical approach (anterior interhemispheric approach or other approach), structural change evidenced on T2-weighted imaging at 6 months, somatosensory evoked potential amplitude decrease greater than 50% during aneurysm manipulation, preexisting multiple ischemic lesions in the lacunar region detected on preoperative T2-weighted imaging, and total microsurgical time. Paired t-tests of the NPE scores were performed to determine the net effect of these factors on neurocognitive function at 6 months.

Results

A significant CSpost − pre decrease was observed in patients with a structural change on postoperative T2-weighted imaging when compared with those without such a change on postoperative T2-weighted imaging (−0.181 vs 0.043, p = 0.012). Multiple regression analysis demonstrated that postoperative T2-weighted imaging change independently and negatively correlated with CSpost − pre (p = 0.0005). In group-rate analysis, postoperative NPE scores were significantly improved relative to preoperative scores.

Conclusions

Minimal structural damage visualized on T2-weighted images at 6 months as a result of factors such as pial/microvascular injury and excessive retraction during surgical manipulation could cause subtle but significant negative effects on postoperative neurocognitive function after surgical clipping of a UIA. However, this detrimental effect was small, and based on the group-rate analysis, the authors conclude that successful and meticulous surgical clipping of a UIA does not adversely affect postoperative cognitive function.

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Takashi Watanabe, Nobuhito Saito, Junko Hirato, Hidetoshi Shimaguchi, Hiroya Fujimaki and Tomio Sasaki

✓ Complete facial palsy (House—Brackmann Grade VI) developed in a 63-year-old man with a vestibular schwannoma 25 months after he had undergone two gamma knife surgeries performed 33 months apart and involving a cumulative dose of 24 Gy directed to the tumor margin at the 50% isodose line. Magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated tumor enlargement with central nonenhancement, which initially had been recognized 21 months after the second radiosurgery. Microsurgery was performed to achieve total removal of the tumor. Histological and immunohistochemical examinations of the facial nerve specimen removed from the edge of the tumor revealed a loss of axons, proliferation of Schwann cells, and microvasculitis. In this case, microvasculitis and axonal degeneration were probably the major causes of the radiation-induced facial neuropathy.