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Elias Dakwar, Stephen I. Rifkin, Ildemaro J. Volcan, J. Allan Goodrich and Juan S. Uribe

Minimally invasive spine surgery is increasingly used to treat various spinal pathologies with the goal of minimizing destruction of the surrounding tissues. Rhabdomyolysis (RM) is a rare but known complication of spine surgery, and acute renal failure (ARF) is in turn a potential complication of severe RM. The authors report the first known case series of RM and ARF following minimally invasive lateral spine surgery.

The authors retrospectively reviewed data in all consecutive patients who underwent a minimally invasive lateral transpsoas approach for interbody fusion with the subsequent development of RM and ARF at 2 institutions between 2006 and 2009. Demographic variables, patient home medications, preoperative laboratory values, and anesthetic used during the procedure were reviewed. All patient data were recorded including the operative procedure, patient positioning, postoperative hospital course, operative time, blood loss, creatine phosphokinase (CPK), creatinine, duration of hospital stay, and complications.

Five of 315 consecutive patients were identified with RM and ARF after undergoing minimally invasive lateral transpsoas spine surgery. There were 4 men and 1 woman with a mean age of 66 years (range 60–71 years). The mean body mass index was 31 kg/m2 and ranged from 25 to 40 kg/m2. Nineteen interbody levels had been fused, with a range of 3–6 levels per patient. The mean operative time was 420 minutes and ranged from 315 to 600 minutes. The CPK ranged from 5000 to 56,000 U/L, with a mean of 25,861 U/L. Two of the 5 patients required temporary hemodialysis, while 3 required only aggressive fluid resuscitation. The mean duration of the hospital stay was 12 days, with a range of 3–25 days

Rhabdomyolysis is a rare but known potential complication of spine surgery. The authors describe the first case series associated with the minimally invasive lateral approach. Surgeons must be aware of the possibility of postoperative RM and ARF, particularly in morbidly obese patients and in procedures associated with prolonged operative times.

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Moses Stephen Mahaley Jr., Robert H. Wilkinson Jr., Selvadurai Sivalingham, Harry Friedman, Wendall Tyson and Jack K. Goodrich

✓ Various diagnostic procedures were compared during investigations of 37 dementia patients undergoing differential study for normal-pressure hydrocephalus or Alzheimer's disease. A diminished radionuclide level in the blood, with abnormal cisternography and pneumoencephalography, provided the most valuable diagnostic evidence of normal-pressure hydrocephalus.

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Ian F. Caplan, Gregory Glauser, Stephen Goodrich, H. Isaac Chen, Timothy H. Lucas, John Y. K. Lee, Scott D. McClintock and Neil R. Malhotra


Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is known to be associated with negative outcomes and is underdiagnosed. The STOP-Bang questionnaire is a screening tool for OSA that has been validated in both medical and surgical populations. Given that readmission after surgical intervention is an undesirable event, the authors sought to investigate, among patients not previously diagnosed with OSA, the capacity of the STOP-Bang questionnaire to predict 30-day readmissions following craniotomy for a supratentorial neoplasm.


For patients undergoing craniotomy for treatment of a supratentorial neoplasm within a multiple-hospital academic medical center, data were captured in a prospective manner via the Neurosurgery Quality Improvement Initiative (NQII) EpiLog tool. Data were collected over a 1-year period for all supratentorial craniotomy cases. An additional criterion for study inclusion was that the patient was alive at 30 postoperative days. Statistical analysis consisted of simple logistic regression, which assessed the ability of the STOP-Bang questionnaire and additional variables to effectively predict outcomes such as 30-day readmission, 30-day emergency department (ED) visit, and 30-day reoperation. The C-statistic was used to represent the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve, which analyzes the discrimination of a variable or model.


Included in the sample were all admissions for supratentorial neoplasms treated with craniotomy (352 patients), 49.72% (n = 175) of which were female. The average STOP-Bang score was 1.91 ± 1.22 (range 0–7). A 1-unit higher STOP-Bang score accurately predicted 30-day readmissions (OR 1.31, p = 0.017) and 30-day ED visits (OR 1.36, p = 0.016) with fair accuracy as confirmed by the ROC curve (C-statistic 0.60–0.61). The STOP-Bang questionnaire did not correlate with 30-day reoperation (p = 0.805) or home discharge (p = 0.315).


The results of this study suggest that undiagnosed OSA, as assessed via the STOP-Bang questionnaire, is a significant predictor of patient health status and readmission risk in the brain tumor craniotomy population. Further investigations should be undertaken to apply this prediction tool in order to enhance postoperative patient care to reduce the need for unplanned readmissions.