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Letter to the Editor: Trigeminal neuralgia

Nan-Xiang Xiong and Hong-Yang Zhao

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Nomogram for preoperative estimation of symptomatic subdural hygroma risk in pediatric intracranial arachnoid cysts

Heng Zhao, Yufan Chen, Shuaiwei Tian, Baocheng Wang, Yang Zhao, and Jie Ma

OBJECTIVE

The occurrence and predictors of symptomatic subdural hygroma (SSH) subsequent to the fenestration of pediatric intracranial arachnoid cysts (IACs) are unclear. In this study, the authors aimed to investigate the likelihood of an SSH following IAC fenestration and the impact on operative efficacy with the ultimate goal of constructing a nomogram.

METHODS

The medical records of 1782 consecutive patients who underwent surgical treatment at the Xin Hua Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine were reviewed. Among these patients, a training cohort (n = 1214) underwent surgery during an earlier period and was used for the development of a nomogram. The remaining patients formed the validation cohort (n = 568) and were used to confirm the performance of the developed model. The development of the nomogram involved the use of potential predictors, while internal validation was conducted using a bootstrap-resampling approach.

RESULTS

SSH was detected in 13.2% (160 of 1214) of patients in the training cohort and in 11.1% (63 of 568) of patients in the validation cohort. Through multivariate analysis, several factors including Galassi type, IAC distance to the basal cisterns, temporal bulge, midline shift, IAC shape in the coronal view, area of the stoma, and artery location near the stoma were identified as independent predictors of SSH. These 7 predictors were used to construct a nomogram, which exhibited a concordance statistic (C-statistic) of 0.826 and demonstrated good calibration. Following internal validation, the nomogram maintained good calibration and discrimination with a C-statistic of 0.799 (95% CI 0.665–0.841). Patients who had nomogram scores < 30 or ≥ 30 were considered to be at low and high risk of SSH occurrence, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS

The predictive model and derived nomogram achieved satisfactory preoperative prediction of SSH. Using this nomogram, the risk for an individual patient can be estimated, and the appropriate surgery can be performed in high-risk patients.

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Gamma Knife surgical treatment for partially embolized cerebral arteriovenous malformations

Xiaochuan Huo, Yuhua Jiang, Xianli Lv, Hongchao Yang, Yang Zhao, and Youxiang Li

OBJECT

A combination of embolization and radiosurgery is used as a common strategy for the treatment of large and complex cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVMs). This study presents the experiences of partially embolized cerebral AVMs followed by Gamma Knife surgery (GKS) and assesses predictive factors for AVM obliteration and hemorrhage.

METHODS

The interventional neuroradiology database that was reviewed included 404 patients who underwent AVM embolization. Using this database, the authors retrospectively analyzed all partially embolized AVM cases followed by GKS for a residual nidus. Except for cases of complete AVM obliteration, the authors excluded all patients with radiological follow-up of less than 2 years. Logistic regression analysis was used to analyze the predictive factors related to AVM obliteration and hemorrhage following GKS. Kaplan-Meier analysis was used to evaluate the obliteration with a cutoff AVM nidus volume of 3 cm3 and 10 cm3.

RESULTS

One hundred sixty-two patients qualified for the study. The median patient age was 26 years and 48.8% were female. Hemorrhage presented as the most common symptom (48.1%). The median preembolization volume of an AVM was 14.3 cm3. The median volume and margin dose for GKS were 10.92 cm3 and 16.0 Gy, respectively. The median radiological and clinical follow-up intervals were 47 and 79 months, respectively. The annual hemorrhage rate was 1.71% and total obliteration rate was 56.8%. Noneloquent area (p = 0.004), superficial location (p < 0.001), decreased volume (p < 0.001), lower Spetzler-Martin grade (p < 0.001), lower Virginia Radiosurgery AVM Scale (RAS; p < 0.001), lower Pollock-Flickinger score (p < 0.001), lower modified Pollock-Flickinger score (p < 0.001), increased maximum dose (p < 0.001), and increased margin dose (p < 0.001) were found to be statistically significant in predicting the probability of AVM obliteration in the univariate analysis. In the multivariate analysis, only volume (p = 0.016) was found to be an independent prognostic factor for AVM obliteration. The log-rank (Mantel-Cox) test of the Kaplan-Meier analysis (chi-square = 54.402, p < 0.001) showed a significantly decreased obliteration rate of different cutoff AVM volume groups of less than 3 cm3, 3–10 cm3, and more than 10 cm3. No independent prognostic factor was found for AVM hemorrhage in multivariate analysis.

CONCLUSIONS

Partially embolized AVMs are amenable to successful treatment with GKS. The volume of the nidus significantly influences the outcome of radiosurgical treatment. The Virginia RAS and Pollock-Flickinger score were found to be reliable scoring systems for selection of patient candidates and prediction of partially embolized AVM closure and complications for GKS.

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Hybrid technique versus traditional dual growing rod technique to treat congenital early-onset scoliosis: a comparative study with more than 3 years of follow-up

Shengru Wang, Yiwei Zhao, Yang Yang, Guanfeng Lin, Jianxiong Shen, Yu Zhao, Nan Wu, Qianyu Zhuang, You Du, and Jianguo Zhang

OBJECTIVE

The authors’ objective was to compare the intermediate outcomes of patients with severe congenital early-onset scoliosis (CEOS) treated with posterior vertebrectomy/hemivertebrectomy with short fusion and dual growing rods (hybrid technique [HT]) and those treated with traditional dual growing rods (TDGRs).

METHODS

A retrospective study of patients who underwent the HT and TDGR technique for CEOS was conducted. The inclusion criteria were CEOS (age < 10 years), Risser stage 0, treatment with HT or TDGR, index surgery performed between 2004 and 2017, and minimum follow-up of 3 years. For patients who completed lengthening procedures, the last lengthening procedure was considered the latest follow-up. Demographic, radiographic, clinical, and patient-reported outcomes and revisions were compared between groups.

RESULTS

Sixty-one patients with CEOS were included in this study, with 16 treated with HT and 45 with TDGR technique. There were no differences in age at index surgery, duration of treatment, or number of lengthening procedures. The lengthening interval was longer in the HT group. The preoperative mean ± SD main curve was 81.8° ± 17.1° for the HT group and 63.3° ± 16.9° for the TDGR group (p < 0.05). However, main curve correction was better in the HT group, and no differences in residual curve were found between groups. Although the preoperative apex vertebral translation (AVT) of the HT group was greater, the correction of AVT was better in the HT group (p < 0.05). No differences in T1–S1 and T1–12 height were found between groups at the latest follow-up. The growth of T1–S1 height was less in the HT group (p < 0.05), whereas the growth of T1–12 height was similar between groups. Patients in the HT group had a lower risk of mechanical complications but higher risks of dural tears and neurological complications.

CONCLUSIONS

HT may provide better correction and apex control ability than TDGR for EOS patients with severe and rigid deformity at the apex level, and it significantly decreased the risk of mechanical complications with little influence on growth of the thoracic spine. HT may be an option for patients with severe CEOS with large asymmetrical growth potential around the apex of the curve.

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First-pass effect in patients with acute basilar artery occlusions undergoing stent retriever thrombectomy

Chenhao Zhao, Ting Hu, Weilin Kong, De Yang, Junfang Wan, Kefeng Lv, Jiasheng Liao, Zhao Chen, He Jiang, Deping Wu, Ping Yang, Wenjie Zi, Fengli Li, and Qingwu Yang

OBJECTIVE

First-pass effect (FPE), defined as successful reperfusion (modified Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction score 2b–3) with a single stent retriever attempt without salvage treatment, has not been fully identified in patients with acute basilar artery occlusion (BAO). The authors’ aim was to assess the impact of FPE on efficacy and safety for patients with BAO.

METHODS

The authors included data from the Acute Basilar Artery Occlusion Study (BASILAR) about patients who underwent mechanical thrombectomy within 24 hours after symptom onset and compared the clinical outcomes of patients who achieved FPE with those who did not. In addition, the authors further compared outcomes between patients with FPE and those with final successful reperfusion achieved with salvage treatment. The primary clinical outcome was favorable outcome (modified Rankin Scale score ≤ 3).

RESULTS

Among 471 enrolled patients, FPE was achieved in 83 (17.6%) who underwent acute BAO thrombectomy. FPE was strongly associated with favorable outcome (adjusted OR 2.84, 95% CI 1.56–5.16, p = 0.001), lower rate of mortality (28.9% of FPE patients vs 48.2% of non-FPE patients, p = 0.001), and shorter median time from groin puncture to recanalization (65 minutes vs 110 minutes, p < 0.001). Occlusion site of the distal basilar artery, cardioembolism, and undetermined etiology were positive predictors of FPE, whereas baseline National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score was a negative predictor. Compared with final successful reperfusion, FPE also contributed independently to favorable outcomes (adjusted OR 2.25, 95% CI 1.23–4.10, p = 0.008).

CONCLUSIONS

FPE was associated with 90-day favorable outcome in patients with acute BAO who underwent stent retriever thrombectomy within 24 hours.

Clinical trial registration no.: ChiCTR1800014759 (www.chictr.org.cn)

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Reconstruction of the superior sagittal sinus with silicone tubing

Jingjian Ma, Tianqiang Song, Wang Hu, Michael Edgar Muhumuza, Wenping Zhao, Shuyuan Yang, Jingwen Bai, and Haixian Yang

Object

The authors conducted a study to develop a safe and effective intracranial venous sinus reconstruction for extensive clinical use.

Methods

After resecting the superior sagittal sinus (SSS), it was reconstructed in eight dogs by performing either a tube-insertion technique or end-to-end anastomosis procedure, in both of which a thin-walled silicone tube was used for repair. The patency of the SSS reconstruction was observed on digital subtraction angiography and transcranial Doppler ultrasonography, preoperatively and at 1, 2, 4, and 8 weeks postoperatively. Histological and ultrastructural changes were observed using light and electron microscopy.

In five dogs the reconstructed SSS was patent, in one it was narrowed, in one it was completely occluded at the proximal site of the anastomosis, and one dog escaped from the laboratory 1 week postoperatively. The authors found no evidence of any additional neurological deficits, signs of toxicity, or side effects. Histological and ultrastructural studies generally showed vascular endothelial proliferation. No thrombosis occurred in the inner surface, at the site of anastomosis, or in the lumen of silicone tube nor in the sagittal sinus at up to 8 weeks postoperatively.

Conclusions

The use of a thin-walled silicone tube as an artificial substitute for intracranial dural venous sinus reconstruction seems to be a valuable technique. The silicone tubes were found to have good biological compatibility, nonthrombogenic effects, and a high patency rate. The method was found to be simple and effective as well as practicable in the clinic for the short term (8 weeks). The authors emphasize that Phase I clinical trials involving silicone tube–assisted SSS reconstruction require further research.

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Clinical outcomes of the traditional dual growing rod technique combined with apical pedicle screws in the treatment of early-onset scoliosis: preliminary results from a single center

Yang Yang, Zhe Su, Shengru Wang, You Du, Yiwei Zhao, Guanfeng Lin, Xiaohan Ye, Nan Wu, Qianyu Zhuang, and Terry Jianguo Zhang

OBJECTIVE

Limited control of an apical deformity is a major disadvantage in the traditional dual growing rod (TDGR) technique. Previous literature has reported the results of apical pedicle screw placement (APS) as an apical control technique in patients with early-onset scoliosis (EOS). However, the clinical outcomes, indications, and complications of the TDGR technique combined with APSs have not been well described. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the preliminary clinical outcomes of the TDGR technique combined with APSs in EOS patients.

METHODS

Clinical data of 12 patients with EOS who were treated with the TDGR technique combined with APSs at the index surgery at the authors’ center from January 2010 to January 2020, with a minimum 2-year follow-up, were retrospectively reviewed. Indications for the use of APSs included 1) no vertebral segmentation failure, fused ribs, or multiple hemivertebrae at the apex; 2) at least 2 normal discs around the apex; and 3) proper development of apical pedicles on the convex side. Etiology, age at index surgery, number of lengthening procedures, follow-up duration, and complications were recorded. Radiographic measurements included Cobb angle, apical vertebral translation (AVT), apical vertebral rotation (AVR), thoracic kyphosis, lumbar lordosis, spine height, and space available for the lung (SAL).

RESULTS

The mean follow-up period was 4.0 ± 1.4 years, with a mean of 4.8 lengthening procedures per patient. The mean Cobb angle improved from 61.7° ± 10.4° to 19.9° ± 9.0° after the index surgery (19.6° ± 9.4° at the latest follow-up). The mean postindex AVT decreased to 16.8 ± 8.9 mm from a preindex AVT of 56.3 ± 9.7 mm and further improved to 13.6 ± 10.0 mm at the latest follow-up. The mean annual increases in T1–12 and T1–S1 height were 9.0 ± 4.7 mm and 13.9 ± 6.5 mm, respectively. The SAL improved from 0.91 to 1.04 at the latest follow-up. AVR improved significantly after the index surgery (p = 0.013), while minor deterioration was observed after repeat lengthening procedures. Five complications (2 implant related and 3 alignment related) occurred in 4 patients.

CONCLUSIONS

For EOS patients with good flexibility (without segmentation failure or multiple hemivertebrae at the apex), the TDGR technique combined with APSs can improve primary curve correction, maintain good correction results, and allow continuous spine growth, which may reduce the risks of complications during lengthening treatment. More multicenter prospective studies with larger samples are needed to further validate the findings of this study.

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Do untreated intraspinal anomalies in congenital scoliosis impact the safety and efficacy of spinal correction surgery? A retrospective case-control study

Qinghua Zhao, Benlong Shi, Xu Sun, Zhen Liu, Hao Su, Yang Li, Zezhang Zhu, and Yong Qiu

OBJECTIVE

Intraspinal anomalies associated with congenital scoliosis (CS) complicate the decision-making process for spinal correction surgery in CS patients. Recently, deformity correction surgery without prior prophylactic neurological intervention has been recognized to be safe in CS patients with intact or stable neurological status. However, no case-control study has identified the surgical outcomes and risks of spinal correction surgery in this patient population. The authors sought to investigate the safety and efficacy of spinal correction surgery for CS associated with untreated intraspinal anomalies (split cord malformation [SCM], tethered cord, and/or syringomyelia) with intact or stable neurological status.

METHODS

A group of CS patients with intraspinal anomalies (CS+IA) and another group of CS patients without intraspinal anomalies (CS-IA) undergoing 1-stage posterior correction surgery were retrospectively reviewed. The radiographic and clinical outcomes and postoperative complications were compared between the 2 groups.

RESULTS

There were 57 patients in the CS+IA group and 184 patients in the CS-IA group. No significant difference was observed in age, sex, spinal curve pattern, main Cobb angle, and flexibility of the main curve between the 2 groups (p > 0.05 for all). The postoperative correction rates of the major curve were comparable between the 2 groups (53.5% vs 55.7% for the CS+IA and CS-IA groups, respectively, p > 0.05). No significant difference was observed in the incidence of either implant-related or neurological complications between 2 groups. No patients in the CS+IA group developed neurological complications, whereas 1 patient in the CS-IA group experienced transient weakness of the left lower extremity after surgery.

CONCLUSIONS

Coexisting intraspinal anomalies (SCM, tethered cord, and/or syringomyelia) in CS patients with normal or stable neurological status do not significantly increase the risk of neurological complications of correction surgery. Prophylactic neurosurgical intervention for intraspinal anomalies before correction surgery might be unnecessary for these patients.

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Mediation of multiple pathways regulating cell proliferation, migration, and apoptosis in the human malignant glioma cell line U87MG via unphosphorylated STAT1

Laboratory investigation

Haitao Ju, Xin Li, Hong Li, Xiaojuan Wang, Hongwei Wang, Yang Li, Changwu Dou, and Gang Zhao

Object

Signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1) is thought to be a tumor suppressor protein. The authors investigated the expression and role of STAT1 in glioblastoma.

Methods

Immunohistochemistry was used to detect the expression of STAT1 in glioblastoma and normal brain tissues. Reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction and Western blot analysis were used to detect mRNA and protein expression levels of STAT1. Cell growth, proliferation, migration, apoptosis, and the expression of related genes and proteins (Bcl-2, Bax, cleaved caspase-3, caspase-9, p21, and proliferating cell nuclear antigen) were examined in vitro via cell counting kit-8, wound-healing, flow cytometry, Rhodamine B, TUNEL, and Western blot assays.

Results

Human glioblastoma had decreased expression of STAT1 proteins. Transfection of the U87MG cells with STAT1 plasmid in vitro demonstrated significant inhibition of cell growth and an increase in apoptotic cell death compared with cells transfected with vector or mock plasmids. These effects were associated with the upregulation of cleaved caspase-3, Bax, and p21 and the downregulation of Bcl-2 expression.

Conclusions

The results of this study suggest that increased expression of STAT1 by transfection with STAT1 plasmid synergistically inhibits human U87MG glioblastoma cell growth in vitro.

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Echolucent carotid plaque is associated with restenosis after carotid endarterectomy

Qing Li, Beibei Liu, Yue Zhao, Yumei Liu, Mingjie Gao, Lingyun Jia, Liqun Jiao, and Yang Hua

OBJECTIVE

The mechanism of carotid endarterectomy (CEA) restenosis remains unclear. Our research aimed to investigate the relationship between the carotid plaque grayscale median (GSM) value and restenosis after CEA.

METHODS

Between January 2010 and January 2018, 1280 consecutive patients underwent CEA at our institution; 32 patients were diagnosed with restenosis by ultrasound at 1 year after CEA. The correlations between plaque GSM, plaque echogenicity, clinical manifestations, shunting, and restenosis were analyzed.

RESULTS

In total, 829 patients were ultimately enrolled; 32 (4%) presented diagnoses of restenosis (mean age 67.3 ± 8.0 years, 81.2% men). The GSM value was lower in the restenosis group (68.1 ± 19.9 vs 59.9 ± 14.7, p = 0.02). After multiple logistic regression analysis, the GSM value was found to be an independent risk factor for restenosis (OR 0.976, 95% CI 0.957–0.995). Shunting was another significant independent risk factor for restenosis (OR 2.39, 95% CI 1.07–5.34). The GSM cutoff value for predicting restenosis was 75 (sensitivity 0.38, specificity 0.84, area under the curve 0.62). We separated the patients into 2 groups by GSM (GSM ≤ 75 and GSM > 75 subgroups). Comparison of the 2 groups indicated that symptomatic manifestation was related to restenosis in the subgroup with GSM ≤ 75, indicating predominantly echolucent plaques, but not in the subgroup with GSM > 75, indicating predominantly echogenic plaques.

CONCLUSIONS

Predominantly echolucent carotid plaques, as measured by GSM, had a higher restenosis risk at 1 year than echogenic plaques.