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Mohamed Samy Elhammady, Stacey Quintero Wolfe, Ramsey Ashour, Hamad Farhat, Roham Moftakhar, Baruch B. Lieber and Mohammad Ali Aziz-Sultan

Object

The authors assessed the safety and efficacy of embolization of head, neck, and spinal tumors with Onyx and determined the correlation between tumor embolization and intraoperative blood loss.

Methods

The authors prospectively collected all head, neck, and spinal tumors embolized with Onyx at their institution over a 28-month period. Information on tumor type, location, extent of tumor devascularization, endovascular and surgical complications, and intraoperative estimated blood loss (EBL) was evaluated.

Results

Forty-three patients with various head, neck, and spinal lesions underwent vascular tumor embolization with Onyx. Indications for embolization included uncontrolled tumor bleeding in 8 cases, elective preoperative devascularization in 34, and tumor-induced consumptive thrombocytopenia in 1 case. Embolization was performed via direct tumoral puncture in 14 cases and through the traditional transarterial route in the remaining lesions. Embolization was successful in ending uncontrolled tumor bleeding in all 8 cases and in reversing the consumptive coagulopathy in 1 case. Intraparenchymal penetration of embolic material was possible in all percutaneously embolized tumors and in 4 of the 20 tumors embolized preoperatively via the transarterial route. The mean percentage of devascularization in tumors with intraparenchymal penetration of Onyx was 90.3% compared with 83.7% in tumors without intraparenchymal penetration. The mean EBL with intraparenchymal penetration of Onyx was significantly lower than when there was no intraparenchymal penetration (459 vs 2698 ml; p = 0.0067). There were no neurological complications related to the embolization procedures.

Conclusions

Embolization of vascular tumors with Onyx can be performed safely but may not reach optimal effectiveness in reducing intraoperative EBL if the embolic material does not penetrate the tumor vasculature. In the authors' experience, the best method of intraparenchymal penetration is achieved with direct tumor puncture. Transarterial embolization may not result in tumor penetration, particularly when injected from a long distance through small caliber or slow flow vessels.

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Michael A. Silva, Alfred P. See, Hormuzdiyar H. Dasenbrock, Ramsey Ashour, Priyank Khandelwal, Nirav J. Patel, Kai U. Frerichs and Mohammad A. Aziz-Sultan

Successful application of endovascular neurosurgery depends on high-quality imaging to define the pathology and the devices as they are being deployed. This is especially challenging in the treatment of complex cases, particularly in proximity to the skull base or in patients who have undergone prior endovascular treatment. The authors sought to optimize real-time image guidance using a simple algorithm that can be applied to any existing fluoroscopy system. Exposure management (exposure level, pulse management) and image post-processing parameters (edge enhancement) were modified from traditional fluoroscopy to improve visualization of device position and material density during deployment. Examples include the deployment of coils in small aneurysms, coils in giant aneurysms, the Pipeline embolization device (PED), the Woven EndoBridge (WEB) device, and carotid artery stents. The authors report on the development of the protocol and their experience using representative cases.

The stent deployment protocol is an image capture and post-processing algorithm that can be applied to existing fluoroscopy systems to improve real-time visualization of device deployment without hardware modifications. Improved image guidance facilitates aneurysm coil packing and proper positioning and deployment of carotid artery stents, flow diverters, and the WEB device, especially in the context of complex anatomy and an obscured field of view.

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Ashish H. Shah, Neal Patel, Daniel M. S. Raper, Amade Bregy, Ramsey Ashour, Mohamed Samy Elhammady, Mohammad Ali Aziz-Sultan, Jacques J. Morcos, Roberto C. Heros and Ricardo J. Komotar

Object

As endovascular techniques have become more advanced, preoperative embolization has become an increasingly used intervention in the management of meningiomas. To date, however, no consensus has been reached on the use of this technique. To clarify the role of preoperative embolization in the management of meningiomas, the authors conducted a systematic review of case reports, case series, and prospective studies to increase the current understanding of the management options for these common lesions and complications associated with preoperative embolization.

Methods

A PubMed search was performed to include all relevant studies in which the management of intracranial meningiomas with preoperative embolization was reported. Immediate complications of embolization were reported as major (sustained) or minor (transient) deficits, death, or no neurological deficits.

Results

A total of 36 studies comprising 459 patients were included in the review. Among patients receiving preoperative embolization for meningiomas, 4.6% (n = 21) sustained complications as a direct result of embolization. Of the 21 patients with embolization-induced complications, the incidence of major complications was 4.8% (n = 1) and the mortality rate was 9.5% (n = 2).

Conclusions

Preoperative embolization is associated with an added risk for morbidity and mortality. Preoperative embolization may be associated with significant complications, but careful selection of ideal cases for embolization may help reduce any added morbidity with this procedure. Although not analyzed in the authors' study, embolization may still reduce rates of surgical morbidity and mortality and therefore may still have a potential benefit for selected patients. Future prospective studies involving the use of preoperative embolization in certain cases of meningiomas may further elucidate its potential benefit and risks.