Victor M. Lu, Kevin Phan, Sean P. Crowley and David J. Daniels
Surgery is the definitive treatment of Chiari malformation Type I (CM-I). It involves posterior fossa decompression, which can be performed along with C-1 laminectomy, reconstructive duraplasty, or tonsil shrinkage. The aim of this study was to provide an updated systematic review and meta-analysis of the latest available evidence regarding posterior fossa decompression only (PFDO) versus posterior fossa decompression with duraplasty (PFDD) in the treatment of CM-I in children.
A literature search was performed in compliance with the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) guidelines for article identification, screening, eligibility, and inclusion. Relevant articles were identified from 6 electronic databases from their inception to April 2016. These articles were screened against established criteria for inclusion into this study.
From 12 relevant studies identified, 1492 pediatric patients treated via PFDD were compared with 1963 pediatric patients treated by PFDO for CM-I. PFDD was associated with greater overall clinical improvement (p = 0.009), along with longer length of stay (p < 0.0001) and more postoperative complications (p = 0.0001) compared with PFDO. No difference was observed between PFDD and PFDO in terms of revision surgery incidence (p = 0.13), estimated blood loss (p = 0.14), syrinx improvement (p = 0.09), or scoliosis improvement (p = 0.95).
It appears that the addition of duraplasty to posterior decompression in the definitive treatment of CM-I in children may alter surgical and performance outcomes. In particular, parameters of overall clinical improvement, length of stay, and postoperative complication may differ between children undergoing PFDD and those undergoing PFDO. Current evidence in the literature is of low to very low quality that, as of yet, has not been able to completely control for inherent selection bias both in study design and surgeon preference. Future, large prospective registries and randomized controlled trials are warranted to validate the findings of this study.
Victor M. Lu, Mohammed A. Alvi, Kerrie L. McDonald and David J. Daniels
Pediatric high-grade gliomas (pHGGs), including diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, present a prognostic challenge given their lethality and rarity. A substitution mutation of lysine for methionine at position 27 in histone H3 (H3K27M) has been shown to be highly specific to these tumors. Data are accumulating regarding the poor outcomes of patients with these tumors; however, the quantification of pooled outcomes has yet to be done, which could assist in prioritizing management. The aim of this study was to quantitatively pool data in the current literature on the H3K27M mutation as an independent prognostic factor in pHGG.
Searches of seven electronic databases from their inception to March 2018 were conducted according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Data were extracted and pooled using a meta-analysis of proportions. Meta-regression was used to identify potential sources of heterogeneity.
Six observational studies satisfied the selection criteria for inclusion. They reported the survival outcomes of a pooled cohort of 474 pHGG patients, with 258 (54%) and 216 (46%) patients positive and negative, respectively, for the H3K27M mutation. Overall, the presence of the mutation was independently and significantly associated with a worse prognosis (HR 3.630, p < 0.001). Overall survival was significantly shorter (by 2.300 years; p = 0.008) when the H3K27M mutation was present in pHGG. Meta-regression did not identify any study covariates of heterogeneous concern.
According to the current literature, pHGG patients positive for the H3K27M mutation are more than 3 times more susceptible to succumbing to this disease by more than 2 years, compared to patients negative for the mutation. More robust outcome data are required to improve our quantitative understanding of this pathological entity in order to assist in prioritizing clinical management. Future larger prospective studies are required to overcome inherent biases in the current literature to validate the quantitative findings of this study.
Victor M. Lu, Erica A. Power, Liang Zhang and David J. Daniels
Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), otherwise known as diffuse midline glioma with H3K27M mutation, is a devastating brainstem glioma without a cure. Efforts are currently underway to better optimize molecular diagnoses through biological sampling, which today remains largely limited to surgical biopsy sampling. Surgical intervention is not without its risks, and therefore a preference remains for a less invasive modality that can provide biological information about the tumor. There is emerging evidence to suggest that a liquid biopsy, targeting biofluids such as CSF and blood plasma, presents an attractive alternative for brain tumors in general. In this update, the authors provide a summary of the progress made to date regarding the use of liquid biopsy to diagnose and monitor DIPG, and they also propose future development and applications of this technique moving forward, given its unique histone biology.
Victor M. Lu, Christopher S. Graffeo, Avital Perry, Lucas P. Carlstrom, Leonardo Rangel-Castilla, Giuseppe Lanzino, Waleed Brinjikji, Eelco F. M. Wijdicks and Alejandro A. Rabinstein
Delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) and aneurysm rebleeding contribute to morbidity and mortality in aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH); however, the relationship between their impacts on overall functional outcome is incompletely understood.
The authors conducted a cohort study of all aSAH during the study period from 2001 to 2016. Primary end points were overall functional outcome and ischemic aSAH sequelae, defined as delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI), DCI with infarction, symptomatic vasospasm (SV), and global cerebral edema (GCE). Outcomes were compared between the rebleed and nonrebleed cohorts overall and after propensity-score matching (PSM) for risk factors and treatment modality. Univariate and multivariate ordered logistic regression analyses for functional outcomes were performed in the PSM cohort to identify predictors of poor outcome.
Four hundred fifty-five aSAH cases admitted within 24 hours of aneurysm rupture were included, of which 411 (90%) experienced initial aneurysm ruptures only, while 44 (10%) had clinically confirmed rebleeding. In the overall cohort, rebleeding was associated with significantly worse functional outcome, longer intensive care unit length of stay (LOS), and GCE (all p < 0.01); treatment modality, overall LOS, DCI, DCI with infarction, and SV were nonsignificant. In the PSM analysis of 43 matched rebleed and 43 matched nonrebleed cases, only poor functional outcome and GCE remained significantly associated with rebleeding (p < 0.01 and p = 0.02, respectively). Multivariate regression identified that both rebleeding (HR 21.5, p < 0.01) and DCI (HR 10.1, p = 0.01) independently predicted poor functional outcome.
Rebleeding and DCI after aSAH are highly morbid and potentially deadly events after aSAH, which appear to have independent negative impacts on overall functional outcome. Early rebleeding did not significantly affect the risk of delayed ischemic complications.