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Michael Forsting, Friedrich K. Albert, Olav Jansen, Rüdiger von Kummer, Alfred Aschoff, Stefan Kunze and Klaus Sartor

In up to 4% of patients whose aneurysms are microsurgically clipped, there is an expected or unexpected aneurysm residuum. The authors describe two patients in whom surgical clipping did not result in complete obliteration of the aneurysm sac and in whom a second operation was not believed to be the solution to the problem. In both patients complete occlusion of the aneurysm residuum was achieved via an endovascular approach. Using the Guglielmi detachable coil system, it was possible to place two platinum coils selectively into the aneurysms. The endovascular approach may be a good treatment option for all patients in whom surgical clipping does not result in complete obliteration of the aneurysm sac and reoperation is contraindicated or unacceptable to the patient.

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Michael Forsting, Friedrich K. Albert, Olav Jansen, Rüdiger von Kummer, Alfred Aschoff, Stefan Kunze and Klaus Sartor

✓ In up to 4% of patients whose aneurysms are microsurgically clipped, there is an expected or unexpected aneurysm residuum. The authors describe two patients in whom surgical clipping did not result in complete obliteration of the aneurysm sac and in whom a second operation was not believed to be the solution to the problem. In both patients complete occlusion of the aneurysm residuum was achieved via an endovascular approach. Using the Guglielmi detachable coil system, it was possible to place two platinum coils selectively into the aneurysms. The endovascular approach may be a good treatment option for all patients in whom surgical clipping does not result in complete obliteration of the aneurysm sac and reoperation is contraindicated or unacceptable to the patient.

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Christian Rainer Wirtz, Thorsten Steiner, Alfred Aschoff, Stefan Schwab, Holger Schnippering, Hans Herbert Steiner, Werner Hacke and Stefan Kunze

Surgical decompression to alleviate raised intracranial pressure has been reported repeatedly in the past decades in small series of patients. Only recently have there been indications from larger trials that surgical decompression may be beneficial in treating space-occupying hemispheric infarction. However, surgical requirements for the procedure to be effective have not yet been defined.

Based on theoretical criteria, the authors operated on 43 patients with medically uncontrollable hemispheric infarctions. The craniectomies were planned to be as large as possible and performed in combination with a subtemporal decompression. Postoperative computerized tomography scans were evaluated for these criteria.

The mean survival rate for the group of 43 patients was 72.1% and no surviving patient ended up in a vegetative state. The mean area of craniectomy was found to be 84.3 ± 16.5 cm2 and the mean distance of the inferior craniectomy margin to the middle fossa was 1.8 ± 1.3 cm. Comparison of survivors and nonsurvivors failed to show a significant difference in the size of craniectomy or the distance to the floor of the middle fossa.

Compared with the reported 80% fatality rate for medically treated stroke patients, in this subgroup the outcome (72.1% survival rate) is remarkably good. The authors conclude that decompressive craniectomy is an effective treatment, able to reduce mortality, and to improve neurological outcome in patients with space-occupying cerebral infarction if the size of craniectomy is large enough. Nevertheless, there is a need for further investigation to identify patients who will benefit from surgery and predictors to optimize the timing of surgical intervention.

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Volker M. Tronnier, Matteo M. Bonsanto, Andreas Staubert, Michael Knauth, Stefan Kunze and Christian R. Wirtz

Object

The authors undertook a study to compare two intraoperative imaging modalities, low-field magnetic resonance (MR) imaging and a prototype of a three-dimensional (3D)–navigated ultrasonography in terms of imaging quality in lesion detection and intraoperative resection control.

Methods

Low-field MR imaging was used for intraoperative resection control and update of navigational data in 101 patients with supratentorial gliomas. Thirty-five patients with different lesions underwent surgery in which the prototype of a 3D-navigated ultrasonography system was used. A prospective comparative study of both intraoperative imaging modalities was initiated with the first seven cases presented here.

In 35 patients (70%) in whom ultrasonography was performed, accurate tumor delineation was demonstrated prior to tumor resection. In the remaining 30% comparison of preoperative MR imaging data and ultrasonography data allowed sufficient anatomical localization to be achieved. Detection of metastases and high-grade gliomas and intra-operative delineation of tumor remnants were comparable between both imaging modalities. In one case of a low-grade glioma better visibility was achieved with ultrasonography. However, intraoperative findings after resection were still difficult to interpret with ultrasonography alone most likely due to the beginning of a learning curve.

Conclusions

Based on these preliminary results, intraoperative MR imaging remains superior to intraoperative ultrasonography in terms of resection control in glioma surgery. Nevertheless, the different features (different planes of slices, any-plane slicing, and creation of a 3D volume and matching of images) of this new ultrasonography system make this tool a very attractive alternative. The intended study of both imaging modalities will hopefully allow a comparison regarding sensitivity and specificity of intraoperative tumor remnant detection, as well as cost effectiveness.