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Xavier T. J. Hsu, Chih-Hsiang Liao, Chun-Fu Lin and Sanford P. C. Hsu

A 57-year-old man presented with acute changes in mental status. Brain CT showed a high-density lesion at the pons. Brain MRA revealed a very slow-flow vascular lesion at the right aspect of the pons, about 3.9 ⋅ 3.0 ⋅ 3.0 cm3, compatible with a pontine cavernous malformation (CM). Gross-total removal was achieved. In this approach, a wider surgical corridor was obtained by opening the Meckel’s cave and cutting the tentorium. For a midline attack point on the pons, additional removal of the posterior clinoid process can meet the goal. In the authors’ opinion, this approach is safe and effective in selected ventrolateral pontine CMs.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/moHqEkp5eCA.

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M. Gazi Yaşargil, Niklaus Krayenbühl, Peter Roth, Sanford P. C. Hsu and Dianne C. H. Yaşargil

Object

The proximal (anterior) transsylvian approach through a pterional craniotomy was developed by the senior author (M.G.Y.) in 1967 for the microsurgical treatment of saccular aneurysms of the circle of Willis, frontoorbital and temporobasal arteriovenous malformations, cavernomas, and extrinsic and intrinsic tumors. The acquired positive surgical experiences on this large series enabled the senior author, in 1973, to apply this approach for the selective amygdalohippocampectomy in patients with intractable mesial temporal lobe epilepsy.

Methods

The proximal (anterior) transsylvian-transamygdala approach to the mesial temporal structures permits the selective two-thirds resection of the amygdala and hippocampus-parahippocampus in an anteroinferior to posteroinferior exploration axis along the base of the semicircular temporal horn. This strategy ensures preservation of the overlying neopallial temporal convolutions such as the T1, T2, T3, and T4 gyri as well as the related subcortical connective fiber systems and other essential components of the temporal white matter.

The application of rigid brain self-retaining retractor systems was strictly avoided during the entire procedure. Computer-assisted navigation was never used. On routine postoperative CT scanning and MR imaging studies, infarction was not observed in any patient. The availability of tractography technology has proven that the connective fiber system around the resected mesial temporal area remains intact.

Results

The surgical outcome and results on neoplastic and vascular lesions of the mesiobasal temporal region have been presented in Volumes II, IIIB, and IVB of Microneurosurgery. The surgical outcomes and results in 102 patients with mesial temporal seizures who underwent surgery performed by the senior author in Zürich have been previously published.

In this paper, 73 patients who underwent surgery between 1994 and September 2006 in Little Rock, Arkansas, are presented, and 13 other patients are excluded who underwent surgery after September 2006. Altogether, among 188 patients who underwent surgery, there was no surgical mortality or morbidity, and no neurological deficits, new neurocognitive dysfunction, or impairments of the preoperative incapacities.

Conclusions

The surgical outcome in terms of seizures was rewarding in the majority of patients, particularly in those who exhibited the following irregularities on preoperative investigations: regular local dysfunctions on electroencephalography, dysmorphic changes in the mesiobasal temporal parenchyma on MR imaging studies, and hypometabolism in the anterior third of the temporal lobe on PET studies.

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Emad Aboud, Ghaith Aboud, Ossama Al-Mefty, Talal Aboud, Stylianos Rammos, Mohammad Abolfotoh, Sanford P. C. Hsu, Sebastian Koga, Adam Arthur and Ali Krisht

OBJECT

Intraoperative rupture occurs in approximately 9.2% of all cranial aneurysm surgeries. This event is not merely a surgical complication, it is also a real surgical crisis that requires swift and decisive action. Neurosurgical residents may have little exposure to this event, but they may face it in their practice. Laboratory training would be invaluable for developing competency in addressing this crisis. In this study, the authors present the “live cadaver” model, which allows repetitive training under lifelike conditions for residents and other trainees to practice managing this crisis.

METHODS

The authors have used the live cadaver model in 13 training courses from 2009 to 2014 to train residents and neurosurgeons in the management of intraoperative aneurysmal rupture. Twenty-three cadaveric head specimens harboring 57 artificial and 2 real aneurysms were used in these courses. Specimens were specially prepared for this technique and connected to a pump that sent artificial blood into the vessels. This setting created a lifelike situation in the cadaver that simulates live surgery in terms of bleeding, pulsation, and softness of tissue.

RESULTS

A total of 203 neurosurgical residents and 89 neurosurgeons and faculty members have practiced and experienced the live cadaver model. Clipping of the aneurysm and management of an intraoperative rupture was first demonstrated by an instructor. Then, trainees worked for 20- to 30-minute sessions each, during which they practiced clipping and reconstruction techniques and managed intraoperative ruptures. Ninety-one of the participants (27 faculty members and 64 participants) completed a questionnaire to rate their personal experience with the model. Most either agreed or strongly agreed that the model was a valid simulation of the conditions of live surgery on cerebral aneurysms and represents a realistic simulation of aneurysmal clipping and intraoperative rupture. Actual performance improvement with this model will require detailed measurement for validating its effectiveness. The model lends itself to evaluation using precise performance measurements.

CONCLUSIONS

The live cadaver model presents a useful simulation of the conditions of live surgery for clipping cerebral aneurysms and managing intraoperative rupture. This model provides a means of practice and promotes team management of intraoperative cerebrovascular critical events. Precise metric measurement for evaluation of training performance improvement can be applied.

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Chih-Hsiang Liao, Jui-To Wang, Chun-Fu Lin, Shao-Ching Chen, Chung-Jung Lin, Sanford P. C. Hsu and Min-Hsiung Chen

OBJECTIVE

Despite the advances in skull base techniques, large petroclival meningiomas (PCMs) still pose a challenge to neurosurgeons. The authors’ objective of this study was to describe a pretemporal trans–Meckel’s cave transtentorial approach for large PCMs and to report the surgical outcomes.

METHODS

From 2014 to 2017, patients harboring large PCMs (> 3 cm) and undergoing their first resection via this procedure at the authors’ institute were included. In combination with pretemporal transcavernous and anterior transpetrosal approaches, the trans–Meckel’s cave transtentorial route was created. Surgical details are described and a video demonstrating the procedure is included. Retrospective review of the medical records and imaging studies was performed.

RESULTS

A total of 18 patients (6 men and 12 women) were included in this study, with mean age of 53 years. The mean sizes of the preoperative and postoperative PCMs were 4.36 cm × 4.09 cm × 4.13 cm (length × width × height) and 0.83 cm × 1.08 cm × 0.75 cm, respectively. Gross-total removal was performed in 7 patients, near-total removal (> 95%) in 7 patients, and subtotal removal in 4 patients (> 90% in 3 patients and > 85% in 1 patient). There were no surgical deaths or patients with postoperative hemiplegia. Surgical complications included transient cranial nerve (CN) III palsy (all patients, resolved in 3 months), transient CN VI palsy (2 patients), CN IV palsy (3 patients, partial recovery), hydrocephalus (3 patients), and CSF otorrhea (1 patient). Temporal lobe retraction–related neurological deficits were not observed.

CONCLUSIONS

A pretemporal trans–Meckel’s cave transtentorial approach offers large surgical exposure and multiple trajectories to the suprasellar, interpeduncular, prepontine, and upper-half clival regions without overt traction, which is mandatory to remove large PCMs. To unlock Meckel’s cave where a large PCM lies abutting the cave, pretemporal transcavernous and anterior transpetrosal approaches are prerequisites to create adequate exposure for the final trans–Meckel’s cave step.

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Cheng-Chia Lee, Hsiu-Mei Wu, Wen-Yuh Chung, Ching-Jen Chen, David Hung-Chi Pan and Sanford P. C. Hsu

Object

Resection of vestibular schwannoma (VS) after Gamma Knife surgery (GKS) is infrequently performed. The goals of this study were to analyze and discuss the neurological outcomes and technical challenges of VS resection and to explore strategies for treating tumors that progress after GKS.

Methods

In total, 708 patients with VS underwent GKS between 1993 and 2012 at Taipei Veterans General Hospital. The post-GKS clinical courses, neurological presentations, and radiological changes in these patients were analyzed. Six hundred patients with imaging follow-up of at least 1 year after GKS treatment were included in this study.

Results

Thirteen patients (2.2%) underwent microsurgery on average 36.8 months (range 3–107 months) after GKS. The indications for the surgery included symptomatic adverse radiation effects (in 4 patients), tumor progression (in 6), and cyst development (in 3). No morbidity or death as a result of the surgery was observed. At the last follow-up evaluation, all patients, except 1 patient with a malignant tumor, had stable or near-normal facial function.

Conclusions

For the few VS cases that require resection after radiosurgery, maximal tumor resection can be achieved with modern skull-based techniques and refined neuromonitoring without affecting facial nerve function.

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Chih-Hsiang Liao, Chung-Jung Lin, Chun-Fu Lin, Hsin-Yi Huang, Min-Hsiung Chen, Sanford P. C. Hsu and Yang-Hsin Shih

OBJECTIVE

The treatment of paraclinoid aneurysms remains challenging. It is important to determine the exact location of the paraclinoid aneurysm when considering treatment options. The authors herein evaluated the effectiveness of using the optic strut (OS) and tuberculum sellae (TS) as radiographic landmarks for distinguishing between intradural and extradural paraclinoid aneurysms on source images from CT angiography (CTA).

METHODS

Between January 2010 and September 2013, a total of 49 surgical patients with the preoperative diagnoses of paraclinoid aneurysm and 1 symptomatic cavernous-clinoid aneurysm were retrospectively identified. With the source images from CTA, the OS and the TS were used as landmarks to predict the location of the paraclinoid aneurysm and its relation to the distal dural ring (DDR). The operative findings were examined to confirm the definitive location of the paraclinoid aneurysm. Statistical analysis was performed to determine the diagnostic effectiveness of the landmarks.

RESULTS

Nineteen patients without preoperative CTA were excluded. The remaining 30 patients comprised the current study. The intraoperative findings confirmed 12 intradural, 12 transitional, and 6 extradural paraclinoid aneurysms, the diagnoses of which were significantly related to the type of aneurysm (p < 0.05) but not factors like sex, age, laterality of aneurysm, or relation of the aneurysm to the ophthalmic artery on digital subtraction angiography. To measure agreement with the correct diagnosis, the OS as a reference point was far superior to the TS (Cohen's kappa coefficients 0.462 and 0.138 for the OS and the TS, respectively). For paraclinoid aneurysms of the medial or posterior type, using the base of the OS as a reference point tended to overestimate intradural paraclinoid aneurysms. The receiver operating characteristic curve indicated that if the aneurysmal neck traverses the axial plane 2 mm above the base of the OS, the aneurysm is most likely to grow across the DDR and present as a transitional aneurysm (sensitivity 0.806; specificity 0.792).

CONCLUSIONS

High-resolution thin-cut CTA is a fast and crucial tool for diagnosing paraclinoid aneurysms. The OS serves as an effective landmark in CTA source images for distinguishing between intradural and extradural paraclinoid aneurysms. The DDR is supposed to be located 2 mm above the base of the OS in axial planes.

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Syu-Jyun Peng, Chien-Chen Chou, Hsiang-Yu Yu, Chien Chen, Der-Jen Yen, Shang-Yeong Kwan, Sanford P. C. Hsu, Chun-Fu Lin, Hsin-Hung Chen and Cheng-Chia Lee

OBJECTIVE

In this study, the authors investigated high-frequency oscillation (HFO) networks during seizures in order to determine how HFOs spread from the focal cerebral cortex and become synchronized across various areas of the brain.

METHODS

All data were obtained from stereoelectroencephalography (SEEG) signals in patients with drug-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). The authors calculated intercontact cross-coefficients between all pairs of contacts to construct HFO networks in 20 seizures that occurred in 5 patients. They then calculated HFO network topology metrics (i.e., network density and component size) after normalizing seizure duration data by dividing each seizure into 10 intervals of equal length (labeled I1–I10).

RESULTS

From the perspective of the dynamic topologies of cortical and subcortical HFO networks, the authors observed a significant increase in network density during intervals I5–I10. A significant increase was also observed in overall energy during intervals I3–I8. The results of subnetwork analysis revealed that the number of components continuously decreased following the onset of seizures, and those results were statistically significant during intervals I3–I10. Furthermore, the majority of nodes were connected to a single dominant component during the propagation of seizures, and the percentage of nodes within the largest component grew significantly until seizure termination.

CONCLUSIONS

The consistent topological changes that the authors observed suggest that TLE is affected by common epileptogenic patterns. Indeed, the findings help to elucidate the epileptogenic network that characterizes TLE, which may be of interest to researchers and physicians working to improve treatment modalities for epilepsy, including resection, cortical stimulation, and neuromodulation treatments that are responsive to network topologies.

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Cheng-Chia Lee, Sanford P. C. Hsu, Chung-Jung Lin, Hsiu-Mei Wu, Yu-Wei Chen, Yung-Hung Luo, Chi-Lu Chiang, Yong-Sin Hu, Wen-Yuh Chung, Cheng-Ying Shiau, Wan-Yuo Guo, David Hung-Chi Pan and Huai-Che Yang

OBJECTIVE

The presence of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations in non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has been associated with elevated radiosensitivity in vitro. However, results from clinical studies on radiosensitivity in cases of NSCLC with EGFR mutations are inconclusive. This paper presents a retrospective analysis of patients with NSCLC who underwent regular follow-up imaging after radiotherapy for brain metastases (BMs). The authors also investigated the influence of EGFR mutations on the efficacy of Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS).

METHODS

This study included 264 patients (1069 BMs) who underwent GKRS treatment and for whom EGFR mutation status, demographics, performance status, and tumor characteristics were available. Radiological images were obtained at 3 months after GKRS and at 3-month intervals thereafter. Kaplan-Meier plots and Cox regression analysis were used to correlate EGFR mutation status and other clinical features with tumor control and overall survival.

RESULTS

The tumor control rates and overall 12-month survival rates were 87.8% and 65.5%, respectively. Tumor control rates in the EGFR mutant group versus the EGFR wild-type group were 90.5% versus 79.4% at 12 months and 75.0% versus 24.5% at 24 months. During the 2-year follow-up period after SRS, the intracranial response rate in the EGFR mutant group was approximately 3-fold higher than that in the wild-type group (p < 0.001). Cox regression multivariate analysis identified EGFR mutation status, extracranial metastasis, primary tumor control, and prescribed margin dose as predictors of tumor control (p = 0.004, p < 0.001, p = 0.004, and p = 0.026, respectively). Treatment with a combination of GKRS and tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) was the most important predictor of overall survival (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS

The current study demonstrated that, among patients with NSCLC-BMs, EGFR mutations were independent prognostic factors of tumor control. It was also determined that a combination of GKRS and TKI had the most pronounced effect on prolonging survival after SRS. In select patient groups, treatment with SRS in conjunction with EGFR-TKIs provided effective tumor control for NSCLC-BMs.