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Alexandra D. Beier, Samuel H. Cheshier, Aabir Chakraborty and Peter Dirks

The syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIADH) is occasionally seen after hypothalamic injury or dysfunction, although it typically occurs in association with other endocrine disturbances. It is has never been described as a presenting feature of a suprasellar arachnoid cyst (SAC) in the pediatric population. The authors describe the case of an enlarging SAC resulting in SIADH as the only presenting feature, with an otherwise normal hypothalamic-pituitary axis.

An SAC was diagnosed in utero in this 5-month-old girl who had a normal functioning hypothalamic-pituitary axis on presentation. Because of cyst enlargement and hydrocephalus, the patient was scheduled for surgery; however, preoperative labs revealed SIADH. After stabilizing the serum sodium concentration with fluid restriction and the administration of 3% sodium chloride, the patient underwent endoscopic cyst fenestration. Postoperatively, she had complete resolution of the SIADH.

Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion as the presenting symptom of an SAC has not been previously described. In the aforementioned patient, the proposed mechanism for SIADH was enlargement of the suprasellar arachnoid cyst causing compression of the supraoptic and paraventricular nuclei and thus overstimulating the secretion of arginine vasopressin, which resulted in SIADH.

The association of SIADH with an SAC is reportable, as is the resolution of the SIADH via cyst fenestration. The authors suggest that SIADH is an uncommon presenting feature of SACs and that syndrome resolution is possible with cyst decompression.

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Jun Jae Shin, Sang Hyun Kim, Yong Eun Cho, Samuel H. Cheshier and Jon Park

Object

Several controversial issues arise in the management of unstable hangman's fractures. Some surgeons perform external reduction and immobilize the patient's neck in a halo vest, while others perform surgical reduction and internal fixation. The nonsurgical treatments with rigid collar or halo vest immobilization present problems, including nonunion, pseudarthrosis, skull fracture, and scalp laceration and may also fail to achieve anatomical realignment of the local C2–3 kyphosis. With recent advances in surgical technique and technology, surgical intervention is increasingly performed as the primary treatment in high cervical fractures. The outcomes of such surgeries are often superior to those of conservative treatment. The authors propose that surgical intervention as a primary management for hangman's fracture may avoid risks inherent in conservative management when severe circumferential discoligamentous instability is present and may reduce the risk of catastrophic results at the fracture site.

The purposes of this study were to assess fracture healing following expedient reduction and surgical fixation and to propose a guideline for treatment of unstable hangman's fractures.

Methods

From April 2006 to December 2011, the authors treated 105 patients with high cervical fractures. This study included 23 (21.9%) of these patients (15 men and 8 women; mean age 46.4 years) with Type II, IIa, and III hangman's fractures according to the Levine and Edwards classification. The patient's age, sex, mechanism of injury, associated injuries, neurological status, and complications were ascertained. The authors retrospectively assessed the clinical outcome (Neck Disability Index), radiological findings (disc height, translation, and angulation), and bony healing.

Results

The average follow-up period was 28.9 months (range 12–63.2 months). The overall average Neck Disability Index score at the time of this study was 6.6 ± 2.3. The average duration of hospitalization was 20.3 days, and fusion was achieved in all cases by 14.8 ± 1.6 weeks after surgery, as demonstrated on dynamic radiographs and cervical 3D CT scans.

The mean pretreatment translation was 6.9 ± 3.2 mm, and the mean postoperative translation was 1.6 ± 1.8 mm (mean reduction 5.2 ± 3.1 mm). The initial angulation was 4.7° ± 5.3° and the postoperative angulation was 2.5° ± 1.8° (mean reduction 6.1° ± 5.3°). The preoperative and postoperative values for translation and angulation differed significantly (p < 0.05). The overall C2–3 disc height was 6.7 ± 1.2 mm preoperatively, whereas 3 months after surgery it was 6.4 ± 1.1 mm. These values did not differ significantly (p = 0.0963).

Conclusions

The authors observed effective reduction and bony healing in cases of unstable hangman's fractures after fixation, and all patients experienced favorable clinical outcomes with neck pain improvement. The protocols allowed for physiological reconstruction of the fractured deformities and avoided external fixation. The authors suggest that posterior reduction and screw fixation should be used as a primary treatment to promote stability of hangman's fracture in the presence of discoligamentous instability or combined fractures.

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Katalin A. Szabo, Samuel H. Cheshier, M. Yashar S. Kalani, Jonathan W. Kim and Raphael Guzman

To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of the use of anterior orbitotomy via the supraorbital eyelid crease to repair a dural tear caused by an orbital roof fracture. When transorbital penetrating injuries occur in children, they are commonly caused by accidental falls onto pointed objects. The authors report on their experience with a 7-year-old girl who fell onto a blunt metal rod hanger that penetrated her left eyelid, traversed superior to the eye globe, and penetrated the orbital roof at a depth of 3–4 cm, lacerating the dura mater and entering the cerebrum. An anterior transpalpebral transorbital approach was used to perform the microsurgical anterior skull base and dural repair. The authors advocate the application of this approach to orbital roof fractures because it provides excellent access to the orbital roof, eliminates the need for more invasive craniotomy, results in a small and well-hidden scar in the eye crease, and overall offers a shorter recovery time with less psychological stress to the patient.

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Robert M. Lober, Raphael Guzman, Samuel H. Cheshier, Douglas R. Fredrick, Michael S. B. Edwards and Kristen W. Yeom

Object

Magnetic resonance imaging is commonly used in diagnosis and surveillance for optic pathway glioma (OPG). The authors investigated the role of diffusion tensor (DT) tractography in assessing the location of visual pathway fibers in the presence of tumor.

Methods

Data in 10 children with OPG were acquired using a 3T MRI generalized autocalibrating parallel acquisitions DT–echo planar imaging sequence (25 isotropic directions with a b value of 1000 seconds/mm2, slice thickness 3 mm). Fiber tractography was performed, with seed regions placed within the optic chiasm and bilateral nerves on the coronal plane, including the tumor and surrounding normal-appearing tissue. Tracking was performed with a curvature threshold of 30°.

Results

For prechiasmatic lesions, fibers either stopped abruptly at the tumor or traversed abnormally dilated nerve segments. Similar findings were seen with chiasmatic lesions, with an additional arrangement in which fibers diverged around the tumor. For each patient, DT tractography provided additional information about visual fiber arrangement in relation to the tumor that was not evident by using conventional MRI methods. Retrospective reconstruction of visual fibers in 1 patient with new postoperative hemianopia revealed an unexpected superior displacement of the optic tract that might have been helpful information had it been applied to preoperative planning or surgical navigation.

Conclusions

Optic pathway DT tractography is feasible in patients with OPG and provides new information about the arrangement of visual fibers in relation to tumors that could be incorporated into surgical navigation for tumor biopsy or debulking procedures.

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Allen L. Ho, John G. D. Cannon, Jyodi Mohole, Arjun V. Pendharkar, Eric S. Sussman, Gordon Li, Michael S. B. Edwards, Samuel H. Cheshier and Gerald A. Grant

OBJECTIVE

Topical antimicrobial compounds are safe and can reduce cost and complications associated with surgical site infections (SSIs). Topical vancomycin has been an effective tool for reducing SSIs following routine neurosurgical procedures in the spine and following adult craniotomies. However, widespread adoption within the pediatric neurosurgical community has not yet occurred, and there are no studies to report on the safety and efficacy of this intervention. The authors present the first institution-wide study of topical vancomycin following open craniotomy in the pediatric population.

METHODS

In this retrospective study the authors reviewed all open craniotomies performed over a period from 05/2014 to 12/2016 for topical vancomycin use, SSIs, and clinical variables associated with SSI. Topical vancomycin was utilized as an infection prophylaxis and was applied as a liquid solution following replacement of a bone flap or after dural closure when no bone flap was reapplied.

RESULTS

Overall, 466 consecutive open craniotomies were completed between 05/2014 and 12/2016, of which 43% utilized topical vancomycin. There was a 1.5% SSI rate in the nontopical cohort versus 0% in the topical vancomycin cohort (p = 0.045). The number needed to treat was 66. There were no significant differences in risk factors for SSI between cohorts. There were no complications associated with topical vancomycin use.

CONCLUSIONS

Routine topical vancomycin administration during closure of open craniotomies can be a safe and effective tool for reducing SSIs in the pediatric neurosurgical population.

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Tej D. Azad, Arjun V. Pendharkar, James Pan, Yuhao Huang, Amy Li, Rogelio Esparza, Swapnil Mehta, Ian D. Connolly, Anand Veeravagu, Cynthia J. Campen, Samuel H. Cheshier, Michael S. B. Edwards, Paul G. Fisher and Gerald A. Grant

OBJECTIVE

Pediatric spinal astrocytomas are rare spinal lesions that pose unique management challenges. Therapeutic options include gross-total resection (GTR), subtotal resection (STR), and adjuvant chemotherapy or radiation therapy. With no randomized controlled trials, the optimal management approach for children with spinal astrocytomas remains unclear. The aim of this study was to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis on pediatric spinal astrocytomas.

METHODS

The authors performed a systematic review of the PubMed/MEDLINE electronic database to investigate the impact of histological grade and extent of resection on overall survival among patients with spinal cord astrocytomas. They retained publications in which the majority of reported cases included astrocytoma histology.

RESULTS

Twenty-nine previously published studies met the eligibility criteria, totaling 578 patients with spinal cord astrocytomas. The spinal level of intramedullary spinal cord tumors was predominantly cervical (53.8%), followed by thoracic (40.8%). Overall, resection was more common than biopsy, and GTR was slightly more commonly achieved than STR (39.7% vs 37.0%). The reported rates of GTR and STR rose markedly from 1984 to 2015. Patients with high-grade astrocytomas had markedly worse 5-year overall survival than patients with low-grade tumors. Patients receiving GTR may have better 5-year overall survival than those receiving STR.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors describe trends in the management of pediatric spinal cord astrocytomas and suggest a benefit of GTR over STR for 5-year overall survival.