Fangxiang Chen and Peter Nakaji
An optimal entry point for endoscopic third ventriculostomy (ETV) helps protect critical structures from undue manipulation. A commonly accepted ideal entry point is 3 cm from the midline and 1 cm anterior to the coronal suture. The authors of this study reexamine this ideal entry point.
Trajectory views from MR images or CT scans used for cranial image guidance in 53 patients (age range 3–85 years) who had undergone ETV were retrospectively evaluated. The trajectory from the tuber cinereum back through the center of the foramen of Monro was projected to the surface of the head. The relation of the entry point to the midline and the coronal suture was established.
The mean perpendicular distance from the ideal entry point to the midline was 30.1 ± 7 mm (median 31.9 mm, range 12.5–42.2 mm). The mean perpendicular distance to the coronal suture was 8.9 ± 14.1 mm posterior (median 10.4 mm), ranging from 30.6 mm anterior to 35.8 mm posterior. The entry point tended to be located more posteriorly in women and adults: 5.8 ± 15.4 mm posterior in males versus 13.1 ± 13.2 mm posterior in females (p = 0.08) and 9.1 ± 14.8 mm posterior in adults versus 8.2 ± 11.7 mm posterior in children (p = 0.84).
While the entry point may need to be modified from the ideal trajectory for other anatomical reasons, such as a trajectory through the motor cortex, in general, the authors found that the optimal entry point for ETV was more posterior than previously published and highly variable. Using image guidance or a customized trajectory based on analysis of a patient's own imaging is highly preferable to using an empirical ideal trajectory.
Robert F. Spetzler, Felipe C. Albuquerque, Joseph M. Zabramski and Peter Nakaji
Fangxiang Chen, Tsinsue Chen and Peter Nakaji
The coronal suture is often used as an empirical landmark for the entry point for endoscopic third ventriculostomy. The trajectory for the approach is often drawn based on midsagittal MRI findings. However, because the coronal suture is not perpendicular to the midline, this method may be inaccurate.
The junction of the coronal and sagittal sutures was exposed at the outer table of the cranium of 15 cadavers. An ideal coronal line was established perpendicular to the sagittal suture at the junction of the sagittal and coronal sutures. The distance from this ideal coronal line at the level of the coronal-sagittal junction to the actual coronal suture was measured at 1-cm intervals. The measured distance between the 2 planes was termed the distance to the coronal suture.
The coronal suture bows forward as it moves from medial to lateral. From 1–6 cm lateral to the sagittal suture, the distance to the coronal suture was 0.1, 0.3, 0.5, 0.8, 1.0, and 1.4 cm, respectively. There was no significant difference between the right and left sides.
The position of a bur hole for endoscopic third ventriculostomy should be moved posteriorly with respect to the coronal suture the more laterally it is placed. Although the adjustment is small, it may be crucial. Failure to make this adjustment may result in suboptimal bur hole placement and increase the risk of morbidity.
M. Yashar S. Kalani, Nikolay L. Martirosyan, Peter Nakaji and Robert F. Spetzler
The supracerebellar infratentorial approach provides access to the dorsal midbrain, pineal region, and tentorial incisura. This approach can be used with the patient in a sitting, prone, park-bench, or supine position. For a patient with a supple neck and favorable anatomy, we prefer the supine position. The ipsilateral shoulder is elevated, the head turned to the contralateral side, the chin is tucked, and the neck extended toward the floor to open the craniocervical angle for added working room. Care must be taken to place the craniotomy laterally to make use of the ascending angle of the tentorium for ease of access to deep-seated lesions.
The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/BZh6ljmE23k.
Nikolay L. Martirosyan, M. Yashar S. Kalani, Peter Nakaji and Robert F. Spetzler
The anterior interhemispheric approach is a workhorse for treatment of lesions in the third ventricle. In this case, we demonstrate the utility of this approach for resecting a complex third ventricular cavernous malformation. We discuss patient positioning, optimal location of the craniotomy, and surgical resection techniques for safe removal of these lesions. We also demonstrate the importance of gravity retraction using the falx to prevent injury to the dominant frontal lobe.
The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/38woc28er7M.
Harjot Thind, Douglas A. Hardesty, Joseph M. Zabramski, Robert F. Spetzler and Peter Nakaji
The successful treatment of an intracranial dural arteriovenous fistula (dAVF) requires complete obliteration of blood flow through the fistulous point. Surgical ligation is often used along with endovascular techniques. Digital subtraction angiography (DSA) can be used to confirm fistula obliteration; however, this technique can be cumbersome intraoperatively and difficult to correlate anatomically with the surgical field. Near-infrared indocyanine green (ICG) videoangiography has been described as a complementary tool for this purpose.
The authors examined intracranial dAVF cases in which microscope-integrated intraoperative ICG videoangiography was used to identify and/or confirm obliteration of the dAVF during surgery. Retrospective evaluation of all intracranial dAVF cases treated with surgical ligation over a 10-year period at the Barrow Neurological Institute (n = 47) revealed 28 cases in which ICG videoangiography was used. The results were compared with findings on preoperative and intraoperative or postoperative DSA.
ICG videoangiography successfully confirmed the fistulous point intraoperatively in 96% (22/23) of the cases. It also revealed complete obliteration of fistulas, comparable to intraoperative or postoperative DSA, in 91% (21/23) of the cases. The false-negative rate of ICG was 8.7% (2/23), which is similar to the false-negative rate of intraoperative DSA alone (10.5% [2/19]).
Microscope-based ICG videoangiography provides real-time information about the intraoperative anatomy of dAVFs. In addition, it can confirm complete obliteration of a fistula. This technique may be useful during dAVF surgery as an independent form of angiography or as an adjunct to intraoperative or postoperative DSA.
Aristotelis S. Filippidis, M. Yashar S. Kalani, Peter Nakaji and Harold L. Rekate
Negative-pressure and low-pressure hydrocephalus are rare clinical entities that are frequently misdiagnosed. They are characterized by recurrent episodes of shunt failure because the intracranial pressure is lower than the opening pressure of the valve. In this report the authors discuss iatrogenic CSF leaks as a cause of low- or negative-pressure hydrocephalus after approaches to the cranial base.
The authors retrospectively reviewed cases of low-pressure or negative-pressure hydrocephalus presenting after cranial approaches complicated with a CSF leak at their institution.
Three patients were identified. Symptoms of high intracranial pressure and ventriculomegaly were present, although the measured pressures were low or negative. A blocked communication between the ventricles and the subarachnoid space was documented in 2 of the cases and presumed in the third. Shunt revisions failed repeatedly. In all cases, temporary clinical and radiographic improvement resulted from external ventricular drainage at subatmospheric pressures. The CSF leaks were sealed and CSF communication was reestablished operatively. In 1 case, neck wrapping was used with temporary success.
Negative-pressure or low-pressure hydrocephalus associated with CSF leaks, especially after cranial base approaches, is difficult to treat. The solution often requires the utilization of subatmospheric external ventricular drains to establish a lower ventricular drainage pressure than the drainage pressure created in the subarachnoid space, where the pressure is artificially lowered by the CSF leak. Treatment involves correction of the CSF leak, neck wrapping to increase brain turgor and allow the pressure in the ventricles to rise to the level of the opening pressure of the valve, and reestablishing the CSF route.
Richard W. Williamson, David A. Wilson, Adib A. Abla, Cameron G. McDougall, Peter Nakaji, Felipe C. Albuquerque and Robert F. Spetzler
Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) from ruptured posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA) aneurysms is uncommon, and long-term outcome data for patients who have suffered such hemorrhages is lacking. This study investigated in-hospital and long-term clinical data from a prospective cohort of patients with SAH from ruptured PICA aneurysms enrolled in a randomized trial; their outcomes were compared with those of SAH patients who were treated for other types of ruptured intracranial aneurysms. The authors hypothesize that PICA patients fare worse than those with aneurysms in other locations and this difference is related to the high rate of lower cranial nerve dysfunction in PICA patients.
The authors analyzed data for 472 patients enrolled in the Barrow Ruptured Aneurysm Trial (BRAT) and retrospectively reviewed vasospasm data not collected prospectively. In the initial cohort, 57 patients were considered angiographically negative for aneurysmal SAH source and did not receive treatment for aneurysms, leaving 415 patients with aneurysmal SAH.
Of 415 patients with aneurysmal SAH, 22 (5.3%) harbored a ruptured PICA aneurysm. Eight of them had dissecting/fusiform-type aneurysms while 14 had saccular-type aneurysms. Nineteen PICA patients were treated with clipping (1 crossover from coiling), 2 were treated with coiling, and 1 died before treatment. When comparing PICA patients to all other aneurysm patients in the study cohort, there were no statistically significant differences in age (mean 57.6 ± 11.8 vs 53.9 ± 11.8 years, p = 0.17), Hunt and Hess grade median III [IQR II–IV] vs III [IQR II–III], p = 0.15), Fisher grade median 3 [IQR 3–3] vs 3 [IQR 3–3], p = 0.53), aneurysm size (mean 6.2 ± 3.0 vs 6.7 ± 4.0 mm, p = 0.55), radiographic vasospasm (53% vs 50%, p = 0.88), or clinical vasospasm (12% vs 23%, p = 0.38). PICA patients were more likely to have a fusiform aneurysm (36% vs 12%, p = 0.004) and had a higher incidence of lower cranial nerve dysfunction and higher rate of tracheostomy/percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy placement compared with non-PICA patients (50% vs 16%, p < 0.001). PICA patients had a significantly higher incidence of poor outcome at discharge (91% vs 67%, p = 0.017), 1-year follow-up (63% vs 29%, p = 0.002), and 3-year follow-up (63% vs 32%, p = 0.006).
Patients with ruptured PICA aneurysms had a similar rate of radiographic vasospasm, equivalent admission Fisher grade and Hunt and Hess scores, but poorer clinical outcomes at discharge and at 1- and 3-year follow-up when compared with the rest of the BRAT SAH patients with ruptured aneurysms. The PICA's location at the medulla and the resultant high rate of lower cranial nerve dysfunction may play a role in the poor outcome for these patients. Furthermore, PICA aneurysms were more likely to be fusiform than saccular, compared with non-PICA aneurysms; the complex nature of these aneurysms may also contribute to their poorer outcome.