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Song Wang, Asem Salma and Mario Ammirati

Object

The posterior interhemispheric transprecuneus gyrus approach is one of the surgical routes that has been suggested to reach the atrium of the lateral ventricle. It has the advantage of avoiding the disruption of the optic radiations; however, it has a narrow working area that at times makes the execution of this approach rather challenging. The aim of this study was to test a modification of the approach that might create a better surgical angle and a wider corridor by accessing the atrium from the contralateral side after transection of the falx. The authors named this new approach the “posterior interhemispheric transfalx transprecuneus approach.”

Methods

The posterior interhemispheic transfalx transprecuneus approach was performed bilaterally on 6 fresh adult cadaveric specimens for a total of 12 procedures. Every head was held in the semisitting position and a parasagittal parietooccipital craniotomy on the contralateral side of the targeted ventricle was executed. The dura mater was opened and reflected based on the sagittal sinus. Then the falx was cut in a triangular fashion based on the inferior sagittal sinus. Using the parietooccipital artery and sulcus as landmarks, the contralateral precuneus gyrus was indentified, and a small area of the gyrus was transected to gain access to the atrium. A neuronavigational system was also used to conduct this approach. The working angle of this approach and other distances were measured

Results

The authors were able to visualize the ventricular atrium, posterior part of the temporal horn, pulvinar, and choroid plexus in all specimens. The temporal horn could be exposed for a length of 20–30 mm from the atrium. The working angle of the approach was better than that of the classic posterior interhemispheric transprecuneus approach with a mean value of 44.5° as opposed to 25.8°. The distance from the middle point of the corticotomy to the splenium ranged from 11 to 16 mm (mean 13.3 mm); the distance to the torcula, from 34 to 53 mm (mean 41.3 mm); and the distance to the atrium, from 22 to 31 mm (mean 25.7 mm).

Conclusions

Results of this study suggested that the proposed approach can expose the atrium and the posterior part of the temporal horn of the lateral ventricle with a wider surgical angle compared with the conventional homolateral posterior interhemispheric transprecuneus gyrus approach. Moreover, by minimizing the amount of brain retraction homolateral to the target, this approach could make navigation more accurate.

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Editorial

Contralateral approach to the atrium of the lateral ventricle

Roberto C. Heros

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Letter to the Editor

Transfalcine approach

Atul Goel

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Xin Yu, Jianning Zhang, Rui Liu, Yaming Wang, Hongwei Wang, Peng Wang, Jinhui Chen and Song Liu

OBJECT

The treatment for giant posterior fossa cystic craniopharyngiomas remains an important challenge in neurosurgery. The authors evaluated the effects of treating 20 patients with giant posterior fossa cystic craniopharyngiomas using phosphorus-32 (P-32) interstitial radiotherapy at their hospital.

METHODS

The patients included 11 boys and 9 girls with an age range of 3 to 168 months. Before treatment, the tumor volumes ranged from 65 to 215 ml. The intracranial pressure was increased in 16 patients, and optic nerve damage had occurred in 18. The patients received P-32 interstitial radiotherapy following stereotactic cyst-fluid aspiration or drainage and were followed up for 7–138 months.

RESULTS

The treatment immediately relieved the intracranial hypertension symptoms in all patients. At the end of follow-up, imaging examinations revealed that the cystic tumors had disappeared, but some residual calcification remained in 12 patients, and had decreased by more than 75% of the initial volume in 8 patients. The damaged optic nerve recovered in 3 cases, improved in 12 cases, remained unchanged in 1 case, and was aggravated in 2 cases. No other severe complications related to surgery or interstitial radiation occurred. During the follow-up period, 7 new cysts appeared in 5 patients who had received additional interstitial radiotherapies with a dose of P-32 that was calculated using the same formula as for the initial treatment. The new tumors then disappeared in 2 patients, significantly shrank in 2 patients, and progressed in 1 patient.

CONCLUSIONS

For treating giant posterior fossa cystic craniopharyngiomas, P-32 interstitial radiation after stereotactic cyst-fluid aspiration or drainage can achieve a high tumor control rate and has relatively satisfactory clinical effects and quality of life outcomes with few complications.

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Haihui Jiang, Zhe Zhang, Xiaohui Ren, Wei Zeng, Junmei Wang and Song Lin

OBJECTIVE

1p/19q co-deletion is a well-established tumor cell–specific chromosomal abnormality in oligodendroglial tumors. The endothelial cells (ECs) of oligodendroglial tumor vessels are considered to be normal cells that do not acquire mutations.

METHODS

A total of 30 samples from 16 male and 14 female patients (median age of 46.5 years) with a histological diagnosis of primary anaplastic oligodendroglioma (AO) were collected in the study. The immunofluorescence technique was used to identify vascular ECs, and the 1p/19q status was detected with fluorescence in situ hybridization. Kaplan-Meier plots were compared using the log-rank method.

RESULTS

The ECs in AO had a higher 1p36 (detected signal) deletion rate than 1q25 (reference signal) (p < 0.01) and a higher 19q13 (detected signal) deletion rate than 19p13 (reference signal) (p < 0.01). The survival analysis results showed that both the progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) of the patients with 1p/19q–co-deleted ECs were significantly longer than those with 1p/19q-intact ECs (PFS, p < 0.001; OS, p < 0.001). This correlation was validated by an independent cohort. In addition, the Cox regression model revealed that 1p/19q co-deletion in ECs was an independent prognostic factor (HR 0.056 [95% CI 0.012–0.261], p < 0.001 for PFS; HR 0.061 [95% CI 0.013–0.280], p < 0.01 for OS).

CONCLUSIONS

1p/19q co-deletion and polysomy can be also found in the ECs of AO, which suggests that the ECs are, in part, tumor related and reflect a novel aspect of tumor angiogenesis.

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Yang Wang, Ting Liu, Liangsong Song, Zhixin Zhang, Yanan Zhang, Jinsong Ni and Laijin Lu

OBJECTIVE

Spontaneous paralysis from hourglass-like fascicular constriction of peripheral nerves is rare, its clinical manifestations are not well documented, and its pathogenesis remains unknown. The unclear origin of this disorder and difficulty in diagnosis result in its uncertain management. The authors sought to gain a more thorough understanding of this condition through describing the anatomy, clinical features, etiology, and treatment of hourglass-like constriction.

METHODS

The authors retrospectively reviewed 20 patients (22 nerves) with hourglass-like constriction. The patients’ clinical information was reviewed. Preoperative sonographic assessment and electrophysiological examination of involved nerves were performed. Surgical treatments included interfascicular neurolysis and neurorrhaphy. Samples of tissue subjected to resected constriction were sent for pathological analysis. The patients had regular face-to-face follow-up visits.

RESULTS

Acute pain was always the first symptom and was followed by paralysis. Paralysis progression was rapid and serious. Surgical exploration indicated an hourglass-like constricted segment completely unrelated to the compressive structures. Electrophysiological analysis showed severe denervation, and histopathological examination showed inflammatory cell infiltration, demyelination, and reduction of nerve fibers.

CONCLUSIONS

Hourglass-like fascicular constrictive neuropathy has an integrative effect from multiple different mechanisms. Surgical intervention is beneficial for selected patients who do not recover in a timely fashion and have hourglass-like lesions confirmed by preoperative ultrasound imaging. The authors recommend that early surgical intervention of the nerve be offered to patients who do not show any signs of recovery 3 months after onset. Both interfascicular neurolysis and neurorrhaphy are effective treatment methods. Mild to moderate constriction can usually be treated successfully by interfascicular neurolysis alone, whereas more advanced lesions with loss of fascicle continuity (severe constriction) may be best treated with resection and direct neurorrhaphy.

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Qing-Song Lin, Wei-Xiong Wang, Yuan-Xiang Lin, Zhang-Ya Lin, Liang-Hong Yu, Yin Kang and De-Zhi Kang

OBJECTIVE

Glutamate excitotoxicity and neuronal apoptosis are suggested to contribute to early brain injury after subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Annexin A7 (ANXA7) has been shown to regulate glutamate release. However, the role of ANXA7 in early brain injury after SAH has not been illustrated. In this study, we aimed to investigate the effect of ANXA7 knockdown in reducing the severity of early brain injury after SAH, and determine the underlying mechanisms.

METHODS

Endovascular perforation was performed to induce SAH in male Sprague-Dawley rats. ANXA7-siRNA was administered via intraventricular injection 5 days before SAH induction. Neurological test, evaluation of SAH grade, assessment of blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability, measurement of brain water content, Western blot, double immunofluorescence staining, TUNEL staining, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) were performed at 24 hours of SAH induction.

RESULTS

ANXA7 protein expression increased significantly after SAH induction and was seen mainly in neurons. High expression of ANXA7 was associated with poor neurological status. ANXA7 knockdown dramatically ameliorated early brain injury through alleviating BBB disruption and brain edema. Further investigation of the mechanism showed that inhibiting ANXA7 expression can rescue neuronal apoptosis. In addition, ANXA7 knockdown also significantly reduced glutamate release, which was consistent with a significant increase of Bcl-2 expression and decreases of Bax and cleaved caspase-3 expression.

CONCLUSIONS

ANXA7 can induce neuronal apoptosis by affecting glutamate release in rats with SAH. Downregulating the expression of ANXA7 can significantly attenuate early brain injury after SAH. Future therapy targeting ANXA7 may be a promising new choice.

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Jian-Cong Weng, Lai-Rong Song, Da Li, Liang Wang, Zhen Wu, Jun-Mei Wang, Gui-Lin Li, Wang Jia, Li-Wei Zhang and Jun-Ting Zhang

OBJECTIVE

Primary intracranial myxomas (PICMs) are extremely rare neoplasms, and their management and prognostic factors remain ambiguous. The authors aimed to elaborate the radiological features, evaluate the risk factors for progression-free survival (PFS), and propose a treatment protocol based on pooled data from cases treated at their institute and those found in the literature.

METHODS

Clinical data from all cases of PICMs treated at the authors’ institute and those cases reported in the English-language literature between 1987 and December 2017 were reviewed. The authors searched the Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, PubMed, and Cochrane databases using the keywords “myxoma” and “central nervous system,” “intracranial,” “cerebral,” “skull base,” “skull,” or “brain.” Previously published data were processed and used according to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Risk factors in the pooled cohort were evaluated.

RESULTS

Cases from the authors’ institute included 21 males and 9 females, with a mean age of 35.7 ± 1.7 years. Gross-total resection (GTR) and non-GTR were achieved in 6 (20.0%) and 24 (80.0%) patients, respectively. After a mean follow-up of 86.7 ± 14.1 months, recurrence occurred in 6 (24%) patients, for a median PFS time of 85.2 months (range 36.0–136.0 months) and no deaths. In the literature between 1987 and 2017, 35 cases of PICM were identified in 14 males and 21 females with a mean age of 31.7 ± 3.2 years. GTR and non-GTR were achieved in 23 (65.7%) and 9 (25.7%) cases, respectively. After a mean follow-up of 25.8 ± 6.9 months (range 1.0–156.0 months), recurrence occurred in 4 (14.3%) patients, for a median PFS time of 11.0 months (range 3.0–36.0 months) and no deaths. Actuarial PFS rates at 1, 5, and 10 years were 93.0%, 80.6%, and 67.9%, respectively. A multivariate model demonstrated that GTR (HR 0.058, 95% CI 0.005–0.680, p = 0.023) was the only factor that favored PFS.

CONCLUSIONS

PICMs are rare neoplasms with a slightly higher occurrence in males. GTR was the only favorable factor for PFS. Based on statistical results, GTR alone, if tolerable, is advocated as the optimal treatment for PICM. Nevertheless, conservative excision may be preferred to avoid damage to vital structures. PICMs have a tendency to recur within a few years of the initial surgery if resection is incomplete; therefore, close postoperative follow-up is mandatory. Future studies with larger cohorts are necessary to verify the study findings.

Systematic review registration no.: CRD42018091517 (www.crd.york.ac.uk/prospero/)

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Shiwei Wang, Diya Su, Jing Li, Dezhi Li, Hong Wan, Michael Schumacher and Song Liu

OBJECTIVE

In this study, the authors used a surgical model of end-to-side neurorrhaphy between a nerve graft and a donor tibial nerve in adult rats to investigate the optimal conditions for axonal regeneration induced by the donor nerve. They also assessed the importance of a more favorable pathway using a predegenerated nerve graft to attract regenerating axons to regrow into the graft and then directing and improving their growth toward the target in comparison with results obtained with a fresh nerve graft.

METHODS

End-to-side neurorrhaphy was performed between a nerve graft and a donor tibial nerve. The nerve graft was obtained from the left tibial nerve, which was either freshly removed or predegenerated 1 week prior to neurorrhaphy. The donor right tibial nerve was injured by epineurium removal alone, injured by epineurium removal with cross section of 20% or 50% of the total axons at the coaptation site, or left intact. The animals were followed postoperatively for a 6-week period, and outcomes were evaluated by optical microscopy and retrograde labeling to detect the regenerated primary sensory neurons located in the lumbar dorsal root ganglia and spinal motor neurons located in the lumbar spinal ventral horn.

RESULTS

At the end of the follow-up period, no regenerating axons were observed in the nerve grafts when the donor nerve was left intact, and very few axons were detected when the donor nerve was injured by epineurium removal alone. However, numerous regenerating axons appeared in the grafts when the donor nerve was axotomized, and the greatest number was achieved with a 50% cross section axotomized nerve. In the rats with a 50% cross section of the donor nerve, better nerve-like morphology of the grafts was observed, without connective adhesions. When a predegenerated nerve graft was used, more regenerating axons were attracted and elongated with a more regular shape and improved myelination.

CONCLUSIONS

Axonal regrowth into a nerve graft depends on axotomy of the donor nerve after end-to-side neurorrhaphy. More efficient attraction and an improved structure of the regenerating axons were achieved when a predegenerated nerve graft was used. Furthermore, a nerve graft may require a certain number of regenerating axons to maintain a nerve-like morphology.

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Song-Bai Gui, Sheng-Yuan Yu, Lei Cao, Ji-wei Bai, Xin-Sheng Wang, Chu-Zhong Li and Ya-Zhuo Zhang

OBJECTIVE

At present, endoscopic treatment is advised as the first procedure in cases of suprasellar arachnoid cysts (SSCs) with hydrocephalus. However, the appropriate therapy for SSCs without hydrocephalus has not been fully determined yet because such cases are very rare and because it is usually difficult to perform the neuroendoscopic procedure in patients without ventriculomegaly given difficulties with ventricular cannulation and the narrow foramen of Monro. The purpose of this study was to find out the value of navigation-guided neuroendoscopic ventriculocystocisternostomy (VCC) for SSCs without lateral ventriculomegaly.

METHODS

Five consecutive patients with SSC without hydrocephalus were surgically treated using endoscopic fenestration (VCC) guided by navigation between March 2014 and November 2015. The surgical technique, success rate, and patient outcomes were assessed and compared with those from hydrocephalic patients managed in a similar fashion.

RESULTS

The small ventricles were successfully cannulated using navigational tracking, and the VCC was accomplished in all patients. There were no operative complications related to the endoscopic procedure. In all patients the SSC decreased in size and symptoms improved postoperatively (mean follow-up 10.4 months).

CONCLUSIONS

Endoscopic VCC can be performed as an effective, safe, and simple treatment option by using intraoperative image-based neuronavigation in SSC patients without hydrocephalus. The image-guided neuroendoscopic procedure improved the accuracy of the endoscopic approach and minimized brain trauma. The absence of hydrocephalus in patients with SSC may not be a contraindication to endoscopic treatment.