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Chien-Jen Hsu, Wen-Ying Chou, Hsiu-Peng Teng, Wei-Ning Chang and Yi-Jiun Chou

Object. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of coralline hydroxyapatite (CHA) and laminectomy-derived bone as an adjuvant graft material when combined with autogenous iliac bone graft (AIBG) in posterolateral fusion (PLF).

Methods. This prospective, case—control study involved 58 patients who underwent lumbar instrumentation-augmented PLF for degenerative spinal stenosis—induced segmental instability between July 2000 and June 2001. The patients were divided into three groups. Laminectomy bone and AIBG were placed in the right intertransverse process space in Group 1 (20 patients), CHA and AIBG were placed in Group 2 (19 patients), and laminectomy bone and CHA were placed in Group 3 (19 patients). Pure autogenous iliac cancellous bone graft was placed in the left intertransverse process space in all three groups of patients. Successful fusion was determined by two spine surgeons after examining the plain, anteroposterior, bilateral oblique, and lateral flexion—extension radiographs. If the examiners did not agree on fusion status, fine-cut computerized tomography scans of the fusion mass were used to make the final decision. The chi-square test was used to compare the fusion rate at different time intervals among the three groups.

Conclusions. Pure AIBG placed in left intertransverse process space was associated with the best fusion rate. After 6 months, CHA produced a comparable result to laminectomy-derived bone when combined with AIBG. When laminectomy bone was mixed with CHA, the combination failed to yield a satisfactory fusion rate (57.9%) even 1 year after surgery if no AIBG was added.

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Hock-Kean Liew, Chih-Wei Hsu, Mei-Jen Wang, Jon-Son Kuo, Ting-Yi Li, Hsiao-Fen Peng, Jia-Yi Wang and Cheng-Yoong Pang

Object

Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) accounts for about 15% of all deaths due to stroke. It frequently causes brain edema, leading to an expansion of brain volume that exerts a negative impact on ICH outcomes. The ICH-induced brain edema involves inflammatory mechanisms. The authors' in vitro study shows that urocortin (UCN) exhibits antiinflammatory and neuroprotective effects. Therefore, the neuroprotective effect of UCN on ICH in rats was investigated.

Methods

Intracerebral hemorrhage was induced by an infusion of bacteria collagenase type VII-S or autologous blood into the unilateral striatum of anesthetized rats. At 1 hour after the induction of ICH, UCN (0.05, 0.5, and 5 μg) was infused into the lateral ventricle on the ipsilateral side. The authors examined the injury area, brain water content, blood-brain barrier permeability, and neurological function.

Results

The UCN, administered in the ipsilateral lateral ventricle, was able to penetrate into the injured striatum. Posttreatment with UCN reduced the injury area, brain edema, and blood-brain barrier permeability and improved neurological deficits of rats with ICH.

Conclusions

Posttreatment with UCN through improving neurological deficits of rats with ICH dose dependently provided a potential therapeutic agent for patients with ICH or other brain injuries.

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Ching-Chang Chen, Peng-Wei Hsu, Shih-Tseng Lee, Chen-Nen Chang, Kuo-Chen Wei, Chieh-Tsai Wu, Yung-Hsin Hsu, Tzu-Kang Lin, Sai-Cheung Lee and Yin-Cheng Huang

Object

Liver cirrhosis was identified as an independent predictor of poor outcomes in patients suffering trauma and in those undergoing major surgeries. The aim of this study was to report the authors' experiences treating patients with cirrhosis who undergo brain surgeries.

Methods

Between 2004 and 2009, 121 consecutive patients with cirrhosis underwent 144 brain procedures. Patients were categorized as Child-Turcotte-Pugh (referred to as “Child”) Class A, B, or C. The patient profiles, including the severity of cirrhosis, reason for surgery, complications, and prognosis factors, were analyzed.

Results

In this retrospective study, the overall surgical complication rate for patients with cirrhosis was 52.1% and the mortality rate was 24.3%. For patients with acute traumatic brain injury (TBI), the complication, rebleeding, and mortality rates reached 84.4%, 68.8%, and 37.5%, respectively. Surgery for TBI was a significant risk factor for postoperative complications (p = 0.0002) and postoperative hemorrhage (p < 0.0001). Otherwise, according to the Child classification, the complication rate increased in a stepwise fashion from 38.7% to 60% to 84.2%, the rebleeding rate from 29.3% to 48.0% to 63.2%, and the mortality rate from 5.3% to 38% to 63.2% for Child A, B, and C, respectively. The Child classification was associated with higher risk of complications—Child B vs A OR 2.84 (95% CI 1.28–6.29), Child C vs A OR 5.39 (95% CI 1.32–22.02). It was also associated with risk of death—Child C vs A OR 30.43 (95% CI 7.71–120.02), Child B vs A OR 10.88 (95% CI 3.42–34.63).

Conclusions

Liver cirrhosis is a poor comorbidity factor for brain surgery. The authors' results suggest that the Child classification used independently is a poor prognostic factor; in addition, grave outcomes were observed in patients with TBI.