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Stanley Hoang, Omar Choudhri, Michael Edwards and Raphael Guzman

A vein of Galen malformation is a rare intracranial vascular lesion affecting the pediatric population. Its poor prognosis has been significantly improved with the development of endovascular embolization. In this paper the authors review the developmental mechanisms, clinical pathophysiology, and the available data on the management and outcome of the disease.

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Omar Choudhri, Stefan A. Mindea, Abdullah Feroze, Ethan Soudry, Steven D. Chang and Jayakar V. Nayak

Object

In this study the authors share their experience using intraoperative spinal navigation and imaging for endoscopic transnasal approaches to the odontoid in 5 patients undergoing C1–2 surgery for basilar invagination at Stanford Hospital and Clinics from 2010 to 2013.

Methods

Of these 5 patients undergoing C1–2 surgery for basilar invagination, 4 underwent a 2-tiered anterior C1–2 resection with posterior occipitocervical fusion during a first stage surgery, followed by endoscopic endonasal odontoidectomy in a separate setting. Intraoperative stereotactic navigation was performed using a surgical navigation system in all cases. Navigation accuracy, characterized as target registration error, ranged between 0.8 mm and 2 mm, with an average of 1.2 mm. Intraoperative imaging using a CT scanner was also performed in 2 patients.

Results

Endoscopic decompression of the brainstem was achieved in all patients, and no intraoperative complications were encountered. All patients were extubated within 24 hours after surgery and were able to swallow within 48 hours. After appropriate initial reconstruction of the defect at the craniocervical junction, no postoperative CSF leakage, arterial injury, or need for reoperation was encountered; 1 patient developed mild postoperative velopharyngeal insufficiency that resolved by the 6-month follow-up evaluation. There were no deaths and no patients required tracheostomy placement. The average inpatient stay after surgery varied between 72 and 96 hours, without extended intensive care unit stays for any patient.

Conclusions

Technologies such as intraoperative CT scanning and merged MRI/CT can provide the surgeon with detailed, virtual real-time information about the extent of complex endoscopic vertebral segment resection and brainstem decompression and lessens the prospect of revision or secondary procedures in this challenging surgical corridor. Moreover, patients experience limited morbidity and can tolerate early oral intake after transnasal endoscopic odontoidectomy. Essential to the successful undertaking of these endoscopic adventures is 1) an understanding of the endoscopic nasal, skull base, and neurovascular anatomy; 2) advanced and extended-length instrumentation including navigation; and 3) a team approach between experienced rhinologists and spine surgeons comfortable with endoscopic skull base techniques

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Omar Choudhri, Abdullah Feroze, Michael P. Marks and Huy M. Do

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) is characterized by formation of widespread thrombus within the cerebral venous sinus system. CVST can cause venous hypertension, venous infarcts, hemorrhage and seizures. It is managed in most cases with systemic anticoagulation through the use of heparin to resolve the thrombus. Patients that demonstrate clinical deterioration while on heparin are often treated with endovascular strategies to recanalize the sinuses. We present the case of a patient with widespread CVST, involving his superior sagittal sinuses and bilateral transverse sigmoid sinuses, who was treated with a combination of endovascular therapies.

The video can be found here: http://youtu.be/w3wAGlT7h8c.

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Omar Choudhri, Jeremy Heit and Huy M. Do

Traumatic dissecting pseudoaneurysms of the cervical and petrous internal carotid artery are often a result of blunt or penetrating trauma. These patients are at high risk for thromboembolic complications and are managed with antiplatelet agents. Patients who develop neurologic symptoms while on antiplatelet agents, or have interval enlargement of their pseudoaneurysms, may require repair of the vessel. We describe a case in which we performed an endovascular repair of an enlarging distal cervical internal carotid artery pseudoaneurysm, with placement of a covered stent.

The video can be found here: http://youtu.be/uCypcsBvOZ4.

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Omar Choudhri and Michael P. Marks

Tentorial dural arteriovenous fistulae are rare intracranial fistulae, in which the fistula pocket is present within the leaves of tentorium cerebelli. These tentorial fistulae can be rarely present near the galenic complex, where they can engorge the deep venous system and cause symptoms of venous hypertension. We present an interesting case of endovascular treatment of a galenic tentorial dural arteriovenous fistula in a patient with headaches and imbalance. The fistula was accessed through the artery of Davidoff and Schecter from the posterior cerebral artery supplying the fistula. The fistula was completely embolized using Onyx and with preservation of vein of Galen.

The video can be found here: http://youtu.be/igX2X5tfvrg.

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Omar Choudhri, Robert M. Lober, Joaquin Camara-Quintana, Kristen W. Yeom, Raphael Guzman and Michael S. B. Edwards

OBJECT

The authors describe the application of a flexible CO2 laser for corpus callosotomy in children with epilepsy.

METHODS

This retrospective case series reviews all cases in which pediatric patients underwent a corpus callosotomy performed using the CO2 OmniGuide laser between May 2005 and October 2012. Data were collected from 8 corpus callosotomy procedures in 6 pediatric patients presenting with medically refractory epilepsy marked by drop attacks.

RESULTS

Complete corpus callosotomies were performed in 6 patients (3 boys, 3 girls; ages 5–14 years). In 4 patients the complete callosotomy occurred as a single procedure, and in 2 patients an anterior two-thirds callosotomy was performed first. These 2 patients subsequently required a complete callosotomy due to inadequate control of their drop attacks. In all cases there was clean lesioning of the tract with preservation of the ependymal plane and less inadvertent thermal tissue damage due to low penetration of the laser through cerebrospinal fluid. All patients had resolution or improvement of drop attacks after surgery. No complications were encountered, and imaging demonstrated a clean sectioning of callosal fibers with preservation of normal ventricular anatomy.

CONCLUSIONS

These cases illustrate the use of this device in completing corpus callosotomy in pediatric patients. The low-profile laser fiber tip was well suited for working in the depths of the interhemispheric fissure with minimal brain retraction. The flexible CO2 laser allows a precise callosal lesioning through an interhemispheric approach and is a useful adjunct to be employed in these cases.

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Aatman Shah, Omar Choudhri, Henry Jung and Gordon Li

In this review paper the authors analyze new therapeutic options for the embolization of meningiomas, as well as the future of meningioma treatment through recent relevant cohorts and articles. They investigate various embolic materials, types of meningiomas amenable to embolization, imaging techniques, and potential imaging biomarkers that could aid in the delivery of embolic materials. They also analyze perfusion status, complications, and new technical aspects of endovascular preoperative embolization of meningiomas. A literature search was performed in PubMed using the terms “meningioma” and “embolization” to investigate recent therapeutic options involving embolization in the treatment of meningioma. The authors looked at various cohorts, complications, materials, and timings of meningioma treatment. Liquid embolic materials are preferable to particle agents because particle embolization carries a higher risk of hemorrhage. Liquid agents maximize the effect of devascularization because of deeper penetration into the trunk and distal tumor vessels. The 3 main imaging techniques, MRI, CT, and angiography, can all be used in a complementary fashion to aid in analyzing and treating meningiomas. Intraarterial perfusion MRI and a new imaging modality for identifying biomarkers, susceptibility-weighted principles of echo shifting with a train of observations (SW-PRESTO), can relay information about perfusion status and degrees of ischemia in embolized meningiomas, and they could be very useful in the realm of therapeutics with embolic material delivery. Direct puncture is yet another therapeutic technique that would allow for more accurate embolization and less blood loss during resection.

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Omar Choudhri, Aatman Shah, Jennifer Basarab-Tung, Richard A. Jaffe and Gary K. Steinberg

The authors describe the case of a 51-year-old man with bilateral moyamoya disease and prior strokes who developed an asystolic cardiac arrest while undergoing revascularization surgery under mild hypothermia. The patient was successfully treated with venoarterial (VA) extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) after manual cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) was unsuccessful for 45 minutes. ECMO is a cardiopulmonary support system that is indicated for respiratory failure in pediatric and adult patients. It is increasingly being used as an extension to mechanical CPR for patients who have suffered cardiac arrest if the underlying cause of cardiac arrest is thought to be reversible. Identifying which patients should be placed on emergency ECMO after cardiac arrest is controversial given its high morbidity and mortality. ECMO in neurosurgical settings has associated risks of intracranial hemorrhage and neurological compromise, while resource utilization is paramount given the high costs of this treatment. This paper is significant because it describes the use of ECMO in an unindicated setting. Limited data are available for ECMO usage after cardiac arrest with baseline cerebral ischemia. Furthermore, this paper raises important considerations for extracorporeal CPR use in a patient who had recently undergone craniotomy. The patient in this report remained on ECMO for 48 hours, after which he was successfully weaned. He developed a pericardial effusion and compartment syndrome from the ECMO but made a complete neurological recovery. Use of ECMO emergently in an appropriately chosen neurosurgical patient is safe, even in the setting of baseline cerebral ischemia and recent craniotomy.

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Abdullah H. Feroze, Graham G. Walmsley, Omar Choudhri, H. Peter Lorenz, Gerald A. Grant and Michael S. B. Edwards

Cranial bone repair is one of the oldest neurosurgical practices. Reconstructing the natural contours of the skull has challenged the ingenuity of surgeons from antiquity to the present day. Given the continuous improvement of neurosurgical and emergency care over the past century, more patients survive such head injuries, thus necessitating more than ever before a simple, safe, and durable means of correcting skull defects. In response, numerous techniques and materials have been devised as the art of cranioplasty has progressed. Although the goals of cranioplasty remain the same, the evolution of techniques and diversity of materials used serves as testimony to the complexity of this task. This paper highlights the evolution of these materials and techniques, with a particular focus on the implications for managing pediatric calvarial repair and emerging trends within the field.