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Yang Lin, Feng Li, Wenjian Chen, Heng Zeng, Anmin Chen and Wei Xiong

OBJECT

This study evaluated the efficacy and safety of mini-open anterior debridement and lumbar interbody fusion in combination with posterior percutaneous fixation for single-level lumbar pyogenic spondylodiscitis.

METHODS

This is a retrospective study. Twenty-two patients with single-level lumbar pyogenic spondylodiscitis underwent mini-open anterior debridement and lumbar interbody fusion in combination with posterior percutaneous fixation via a modified anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) approach. Patients underwent follow-up for 24 to 38 months. Clinical data, etiological examinations, operative time, intraoperative blood loss, American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) grade, Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) lumbar function score, visual analog scale (VAS) score, Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), postoperative complications, and the bony fusion rate were recorded.

RESULTS

The mean operative time was 181.1 ± 22.6 minutes (range 155–240 minutes). The mean intraoperative blood loss was 173.2 ± 70.1 ml (range 100–400 ml). Infection was found in lumbar vertebrae L2–3, L3–4, and L4–5 in 2, 6, and 14 patients, respectively. Bacterial cultures were positive in 15 patients, including 4 with Staphylococcus aureus, 6 with Staphylococcus epidermidis, 4 with Streptococcus, and 1 with Escherichia coli. Postoperative complications included urinary retention, constipation, and numbness in the thigh in 5, 3, and 2 patients, respectively. Compared with before surgery, the VAS scores and ODI were significantly lower at the final follow-up, the JOA scores were significantly higher, and the ASIA grades had improved. All patients achieved good intervertebral bony fusion.

CONCLUSIONS

Mini-open anterior debridement and lumbar interbody fusion in combination with posterior percutaneous fixation via a modified ALIF approach results in little surgical trauma and intraoperative blood loss, acceptable postoperative complications, and is effective and safe for the treatment of single-level lumbar pyogenic spondylodiscitis. This approach could be an alternative to the conventional open surgery.

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Jian Shen, Jian-Wei Pan, Zuo-Xu Fan, Xiao-Xing Xiong and Ren-Ya Zhan

Object

Clazosentan therapy after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) has been found to be effective in reducing the incidence of vasospasm in randomized controlled trials. However, while vasospasm-related morbidity, including delayed ischemic neurological deficits (DINDs) and delayed cerebral infarctions, was consistently decreased, statistical significance was not demonstrated and outcomes were not affected by clazosentan treatment. The objective of this meta-analysis was to determine whether clazosentan treatment after aneurysmal SAH significantly reduced the incidence of DINDs and delayed cerebral infarctions and improved outcomes.

Methods

All randomized controlled trials investigating the effect of clazosentan were retrieved via searches with sensitive and specific terms. Six variables were abstracted after the assessment of the methodological quality of the trials. Analyses were performed following the method guidelines of the Cochrane Back Review Group.

Results

Four randomized, placebo-controlled trials met eligibility criteria, enrolling a total of 2181 patients. The meta-analysis demonstrated a significant decrease in the incidence of DINDs (relative risk [RR] 0.76 [95% CI 0.62–0.92]) and delayed cerebral infarction (RR 0.79 [95% CI 0.63–1.00]) in patients treated with clazosentan after aneurysmal SAH. However, this treatment regimen was not shown to outcomes including functional outcomes measured by Glasgow Outcome Scale-Extended (RR 1.12 [95% CI 0.96–1.30]) or mortality (RR 1.02 [95%CI 0.70–1.49]). Adverse events, including pulmonary complications, anemia, and hypotension, were all significantly increased in patients who received clazosentan therapy.

Conclusions

The results of the present meta-analysis show that treatment with clazosentan after aneurysmal SAH significantly reduced the incidence of the vasospasm-related DINDs and delayed cerebral infarctions, but did not improve poor neurological outcomes in patients with aneurysmal SAH. Further study is required to elucidate the dissociation between vasospasm-related morbidity and outcomes.

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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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Quan-chang Tan, Jian-wei Wu, Fei Peng, Yuan Zang, Yang Li, Xiong Zhao, Wei Lei and Zi-xiang Wu

OBJECTIVE

This study investigated the optimum injection volume of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) to augment a novel fenestrated pedicle screw (FPS) with diameter-tapered perforations in the osteoporotic vertebral body, and how the distribution characteristics of PMMA affect the biomechanical performance of this screw.

METHODS

Two types of FPSs were designed (FPS-A, composed of 6 perforations with an equal diameter of 1.2 mm; and FPS-B, composed of 6 perforations each with a tapered diameter of 1.5 mm, 1.2 mm, and 0.9 mm from tip to head. Each of 28 human cadaveric osteoporotic vertebrae were randomly assigned to 1 of 7 groups: FPS-A1.0: FPS-A+1.0 ml PMMA; FPS-A1.5: FPS-A+1.5 ml PMMA; FPS-A2.0: FPS-A+2.0 ml PMMA; FPS-B1.0: FPS-B+1.0 ml PMMA; FPS-B1.5: FPS-B+1.5 ml PMMA; FPS-B2.0: FPS-B+2.0 ml PMMA; and conventional pedicle screws (CPSs) without PMMA. After the augmentation, 3D CT was performed to assess the cement distribution characteristics and the cement leakage rate. Axial pullout tests were performed to compare the maximum pullout force thereafter.

RESULTS

The CT construction images showed that PMMA bone cement formed a conical mass around FPS-A and a cylindrical mass around FPS-B. When the injection volume was increased from 1.0 ml to 2.0 ml, the distribution region of the PMMA cement was enlarged, the PMMA was distributed more posteriorly, and the risk of leakage was increased. When the injection volume reached 2.0 ml, the risk of cement leakage was lower for screws having diameter-tapered perforations. The pullout strengths of the augmented FPS-A groups and FPS-B groups were higher than that of the CPS group (p < 0.0001). All FPS-B groups had a higher pullout strength than the FPS-A groups.

CONCLUSIONS

The diameter of the perforations affects the distribution of PMMA cement. The diameter-tapered design enabled PMMA to form larger bone-PMMA interfaces and achieve a relatively higher pullout strength, although statistical significance was not reached. Study results indicated 1.5-ml of PMMA was a conservative volume for PMMA augmentation; more cement injection would significantly increase the risk of cement leakage.

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Yaxing Chen and Liangxue Zhou

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Jung-Chun Lin, Te-Jung Liu, Shih-Wei Hsu, Kuan-Yin Tseng, Tung-Han Tsai, Hsin-I Ma and Dueng-Yuan Hueng