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Feng Shen, Bin Zhou, Quan Li, Ming Li, Zhiwei Wang, Qiang Li and Bo Ran

OBJECT

The object of this study was to review the effectiveness in treating severe and rigid scoliosis with posterioronly spinal release combined with derotation, translation, segmental correction, and an in situ rod-contouring technique.

METHODS

Twenty-eight patients with severe and rigid scoliosis (Cobb angle > 70° and flexibility < 30%) were retrospectively enrolled between June 2008 and June 2010. The average age of the patients was 17.1 years old (range 12–22 years old), 18 were female, and 10 were male. Etiological diagnoses were idiopathic in 24 patients, neuromuscular in 2 patients, and Marfan syndrome in 2 patients. All patients underwent posterior spinal release, derotation, translation, segmental correction, and an in situ rod-contouring technique. The scoliosis Cobb angle in the coronal plane, kyphosis Cobb angle, apex vertebral translation, and trunk shift were evaluated preoperatively and postoperatively.

RESULTS

The average operative time was 241.8 ± 32.1 minutes and estimated blood loss was 780.5 ± 132.6 ml. The average scoliosis Cobb angle in the coronal plane was corrected from 85.7° (range 77°–94°) preoperatively to 33.1° (range 21°–52°) postoperatively, with a correction ratio of 61.3%. The average kyphosis Cobb angle was 64.5° (range 59°–83°) preoperatively, which was decreased to 42.6° (range 34°–58°) postoperatively, with a correction ratio of 33.9%. After an average of 24 months of follow-up (range 13–30 months), no major complications were observed in these patients, except screw pullout of the upper thoracic vertebrae in 2 patients and screw penetration into the apical vertebrae in 1 patient.

CONCLUSIONS

Posterior spinal release combined with derotation, translation, segmental correction, and an in situ rod-contouring technique has proved to be a promising new technique for rigid scoliosis, significantly correcting the scoliosis and accompanied by fewer complications.

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Hongwei Wang, Yuan Zhang, Qiang Xiang, Xuke Wang, Changqing Li, Hongyan Xiong and Yue Zhou

Object

The main objective of this study was to analyze the epidemiological data obtained from patients with traumatic spinal fracture at 2 university-affiliated hospitals in Chongqing, China.

Methods

The authors retrospectively reviewed the hospital records of all patients who suffered traumatic spinal fracture and were treated at Xinqiao Hospital and Southwest Hospital (both affiliated with The Third Military Medical University) between January 2001 and December 2010. The demographic characteristics, injury characteristics, and clinical outcomes of patients over this 10-year period were compared.

Results

A total of 3142 patients (mean age 45.7 years, range 1–92 years) with traumatic spinal fractures were identified; 65.5% of the patients were male. The peak frequency of these injuries occurred in the 31- to 40-year-old age group. Accidental falls and traffic accidents were the most common causes of spinal fractures (58.9% and 20.9%, respectively). Traffic accidents tended to occur in younger patients, whereas accidental falls tended to occur in older patients. The most common area of fracture was the thoracolumbar spine (54.9%). Cervical spinal fractures were significantly more common in patients injured in traffic accidents, while lumbar spinal fractures were more common in accidental fall patients. Using the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) classification, 479 (15.3%) patients were classified as having ASIA A injuries; 913 (29.1%), ASIA B, ASIA C, or ASIA D; and 1750 (55.7%), ASIA E. ASIA A injuries were more common in patients who suffered thoracic spinal fractures (15.09%) than in those with fractures in other areas of the spine. A total of 954 (30.4%) patients had associated nonspinal injuries. Of these patients, 389 (40.78%) suffered a thoracic injury, and 191 (20.02%) sustained a head and neck injury. The length of hospitalization differed significantly between the accidental falls from high heights and falls from low heights, as did the mean cost of hospitalization (p < 0.05), but no significant difference was found between accidental falls from high heights and traffic accidents (p > 0.05). The length of hospitalization differed significantly among the 3 groups according to the ASIA classification, as did the mean cost of hospitalization (p < 0.05). Of patients with incomplete lesions, 39.3% improved 1 or more grades in ASIA classification during hospitalization.

Conclusions

Accidental falls emerged as the leading cause of traumatic spinal fracture in this study, and the numbers of fall-induced and sports-related injuries increased steadily with age. These results indicate that there should be increased concern for the consequences of fall- and sports-related injuries among the elderly.

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Qiang Yuan, Xing Wu, Yirui Sun, Jian Yu, Zhiqi Li, Zhuoying Du, Ying Mao, Liangfu Zhou and Jin Hu

OBJECT

Some studies have demonstrated that intracranial pressure (ICP) monitoring reduces the mortality of traumatic brain injury (TBI). But other studies have shown that ICP monitoring is associated with increased mortality. Thus, the authors performed a meta-analysis of studies comparing ICP monitoring with no ICP monitoring in patients who have suffered a TBI to determine if differences exist between these strategies with respect to mortality, intensive care unit (ICU) length of stay (LOS), and hospital LOS.

METHODS

The authors systematically searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Central) from their inception to October 2013 for relevant studies. Randomized clinical trials and prospective cohort, retrospective observational cohort, and case-control studies that compared ICP monitoring with no ICP monitoring for the treatment of TBI were included in the analysis. Studies included had to report at least one point of mortality in an ICP monitoring group and a no–ICP monitoring group. Data were extracted for study characteristics, patient demographics, baseline characteristics, treatment details, and study outcomes.

RESULTS

A total of 14 studies including 24,792 patients were analyzed. The meta-analysis provides no evidence that ICP monitoring decreased the risk of death (pooled OR 0.93 [95% CI 0.77–1.11], p = 0.40). However, 7 of the studies including 12,944 patients were published after 2012 (January 2012 to October 2013), and they revealed that ICP monitoring was significantly associated with a greater decrease in mortality than no ICP monitoring (pooled OR 0.56 [95% CI 0.41–0.78], p = 0.0006). In addition, 7 of the studies conducted in North America showed no evidence that ICP monitoring decreased the risk of death, similar to the studies conducted in other regions. ICU LOSs were significantly longer for the group subjected to ICP monitoring (mean difference [MD] 0.29 [95% CI 0.21–0.37]; p < 0.00001). In the pooled data, the hospital LOS with ICP monitoring was also significantly longer than with no ICP monitoring (MD 0.21 [95% CI 0.04–0.37]; p = 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS

In this systematic review and meta-analysis of ICP monitoring studies, the authors found that the current clinical evidence does not indicate that ICP monitoring overall is significantly superior to no ICP monitoring in terms of the mortality of TBI patients. However, studies published after 2012 indicated a lower mortality in patients who underwent ICP monitoring.

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Jian-Hua Zhong, Hua-Jun Zhou, Tao Tang, Han-Jin Cui, A-Li Yang, Qi-Mei Zhang, Jing-Hua Zhou, Qiang Zhang, Xun Gong, Zhao-Hui Zhang and Zhi-Gang Mei

OBJECTIVE

Reactive astrogliosis, a key feature that is characterized by glial proliferation, has been observed in rat brains after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). However, the mechanisms that control reactive astrogliosis formation remain unknown. Notch-1 signaling plays a critical role in modulating reactive astrogliosis. The purpose of this paper was to establish whether Notch-1 signaling is involved in reactive astrogliosis after ICH.

METHODS

ICH was induced in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats via stereotactic injection of autologous blood into the right globus pallidus. N-[N-(3,5-difluorophenacetyl)-l-alanyl]-S-phenylglycine t-butyl ester (DAPT) was injected into the lateral ventricle to block Notch-1 signaling. The rats’ brains were perfused to identify proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)-positive/GFAP-positive nuclei. The expression of GFAP, Notch-1, and the activated form of Notch-1 (Notch intracellular domain [NICD]) and its ligand Jagged-1 was assessed using immunohistochemical and Western blot analyses, respectively.

RESULTS

Notch-1 signaling was upregulated and activated after ICH as confirmed by an increase in the expression of Notch-1 and NICD and its ligand Jagged-1. Remarkably, blockade of Notch-1 signaling with the specific inhibitor DAPT suppressed astrocytic proliferation and GFAP levels caused by ICH. In addition, DAPT improved neurological outcome after ICH.

CONCLUSIONS

Notch-1 signaling is a critical regulator of ICH-induced reactive astrogliosis, and its blockage may be a potential therapeutic strategy for hemorrhagic injury.

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Qiang Tan, Qianwei Chen, Yin Niu, Zhou Feng, Lin Li, Yihao Tao, Jun Tang, Liming Yang, Jing Guo, Hua Feng, Gang Zhu and Zhi Chen

OBJECTIVE

Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) is associated with a high rate of mortality and severe disability, while fibrinolysis for ICH evacuation is a possible treatment. However, reported adverse effects can counteract the benefits of fibrinolysis and limit the use of tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA). Identifying appropriate fibrinolytics is still needed. Therefore, the authors here compared the use of urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA), an alternate thrombolytic, with that of tPA in a preclinical study.

METHODS

Intracerebral hemorrhage was induced in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats by injecting autologous blood into the caudate, followed by intraclot fibrinolysis without drainage. Rats were randomized to receive uPA, tPA, or saline within the clot. Hematoma and perihematomal edema, brain water content, Evans blue fluorescence and neurological scores, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), MMP mRNA, blood-brain barrier (BBB) tight junction proteins, and nuclear factor–κB (NF-κB) activation were measured to evaluate the effects of these 2 drugs in ICH.

RESULTS

In comparison with tPA, uPA better ameliorated brain edema and promoted an improved outcome after ICH. In addition, uPA therapy more effectively upregulated BBB tight junction protein expression, which was partly attributed to the different effects of uPA and tPA on the regulation of MMPs and its related mRNA expression following ICH.

CONCLUSIONS

This study provided evidence supporting the use of uPA for fibrinolytic therapy after ICH. Large animal experiments and clinical trials are required to further explore the efficacy and safety of uPA in ICH fibrinolysis.

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Qiao Zuo, Pengfei Yang, Nan Lv, Qinghai Huang, Yu Zhou, Xiaoxi Zhang, Guoli Duan, Yina Wu, Yi Xu, Bo Hong, Rui Zhao, Qiang Li, Yibin Fang, Kaijun Zhao, Dongwei Dai and Jianmin Liu

OBJECTIVE

The authors compared the contemporary perioperative procedure-related complications between coiling with stent placement and coiling without stent placement for acutely ruptured aneurysms treated in a single center after improvement of interventional skills and strategy.

METHODS

In an institutional review board–approved protocol, 133 patients who underwent coiling with stent placement and 289 patients who underwent coiling without stent placement from January 2012 to December 2014 were consecutively reviewed retrospectively. Baseline characteristics, procedure-related complications and mortality rate, angiographic follow-up results, and clinical outcomes were compared between the two groups. Univariate analysis and logistic regression analysis were performed to determine the association of procedure-related complications of coiling with stent placement with potential risk factors.

RESULTS

The coiling/stent group and coiling/no-stent group were statistically comparable with respect to all baseline characteristics except for aneurysm location (p < 0.001) and parent artery configuration (p = 0.024). The immediate embolization results and clinical outcomes between the two groups showed no significant differences (p = 0.807 and p = 0.611, respectively). The angiographic follow-up results of the coiling in stent group showed a significant higher occlusion rate and lower recurrence rate compared with the coiling/no-stent group (82.5% vs 66.7%, 3.5% vs 14.5%, p = 0.007). Procedure-related intraoperative rupture and thrombosis, postoperative early rebleeding and thrombosis, and external ventricular drainage–related hemorrhagic event occurred in 3.0% (4 of 133), 2.3% (3 of 133), 1.5% (2 of 133), 0.7% (1 of 133), and 0.8% (1 of 133) of the coiling/stent group compared with 1.0% (3 of 289), 1.4% (4 of 289), 1.4% (4 of 289), and 0.7% (2 of 289) of the coiling/no-stent group, respectively (p = 0.288, p = 0.810, p = 1.000, p = 0.315, and p = 1.000, respectively). One patient presented with coil protrusion in the group of coiling without stent. The procedure-related mortality was 1.5% (2 of 133) in the coiling/stent group and 0.7% in the coiling/no-stent group (p = 0.796). Multivariable analysis showed no significant predictors for the total perioperative procedure-related complications, hemorrhagic complications, or ischemic complications.

CONCLUSIONS

The perioperative procedure-related complications and mortality rate did not differ significantly between the coiling/stent group and the coiling/no-stent group for patients with acutely ruptured aneurysms. Considering the better angiographic follow-up results, coiling with stent placement might be a feasible, safe, and promising option for treatment in the acute phase of selected wide-necked ruptured intracranial aneurysms.