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Alexander R. Vaccaro, Matthew M. Robbins, Luke Madigan, Todd J. Albert, William Smith and Alan S. Hilibrand


In this pilot study the authors assessed the efficacy of bioabsorbable interbody spacers in the treatment of cervical degenerative disease. Metallic cages or interbody spacers have been widely used in the treatment of degenerative and traumatic cervical disease. Bioabsorbable technology has been used to develop a resorbable cage that can eliminate the complications and drawbacks seen with the use of traditional metallic implants. In general clinical practice bioabsorbable implants have shown the ability to degrade safely while demonstrating optimal imaging characteristics as a result of their radiolucency, and these devices eliminate stress shielding by their gradual dissolution.


This study is a retrospective evaluation of charts and x-ray films obtained in the first eight patients who underwent an anterior cervical decompression and fusion procedure with placement of a bioabsorbable interbody spacer and anterior cervical plate. All patients were treated in one surgeon's practice and had a minimum follow-up period of at least 6 months. At a follow-up interval of approximately 7 months, five patients exhibited an excellent result and three had a good result; no patient was noted to have a satisfactory or poor outcome according to the Odom criteria at their most recent follow-up visit. Seventeen (94%) of 18 grafted levels appeared to be solidly fused. One patient experienced a perisurgical complication consisting of a symptomatic hematoma, which was successfully drained.


Bioabsorbable interbody spacers appear to be a safe and effective interbody implant in terms of clinical outcome and radiographically confirmed healing.

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Thomas A. Gaffey, Bernd W. Scheithauer, Ricardo V. Lloyd, Peter C. Burger, Peter Robbins, Forouzandeh Fereidooni, Eva Horvath, Kalman Kovacs, Takao Kuroki, William F. Young Jr., Thomas J. Sebo, Darren L. Riehle and Allan J. Belzberg

✓ To understand the relationship between pituitary adenoma and carcinoma, four adrenocorticotropic hormone—producing pituitary adenomas and corresponding metastatic carcinomas were studied. All were functional macroadenomas (three cases of Nelson syndrome and one of Cushing disease) that initially invaded the sella turcica and occurred in women ranging in age from 17 to 66 years (mean 45 years). Metastases (two craniospinal and two systemic) occurred after latency periods of 6 to 13 years. Histological specimens were immunostained for pituitary hormones, Ki-67 antigen (MIB-1), p53 and p27 proteins, D-type cyclins, and glucocorticoid receptor messenger (m)RNA. The DNA content of the specimens was assessed using Feulgen stain. Reactivities were quantified by digital image analysis. Primary/recurrent lesions and metastatic tumors differed according to their respective mean mitotic indices (1.2/10 hpf compared with 4.3/10 hpf), MIB-1 labeling (1.7% compared with 8%), p53 staining (37.3% compared with 49.9%), and p27 labeling (48% compared with 25%). Cyclin D3 immunoreactivity provided no prognostically significant information. Glucocorticoid receptor mRNA was detected in all cases. Results of a ploidy analysis were variable and nonprognostic. In keeping with the 2000 World Health Organization classification of endocrine neoplasms, our findings support the concept that primary tumors that exhibit mitotic activity, an increased (> 3%) MIB-1 labeling index, and/or p53 immunoreactivity should be termed “atypical adenomas” to denote their aggressive potential and the possibility of future malignant transformation.

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Oral Presentations

2010 AANS Annual Meeting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 1–5, 2010