✓ A case is reported of malignant schwannomatosis (malignant transformation of von Recklinghausen's disease) with catecholamine production in a patient with multiple intracranial aneurysms. The patient had a history of episodic hypertension and elevated levels of catecholamines in the serum and 24-hour urinary excretion. Postmortem examination revealed diffuse central nervous sytem (CNS) dissemination of the tumor from the thoracolumbar spinal malignant schwannoma. A high concentration of catecholamines was demonstrated in the tumor tissue, and histochemical and electron microscopy studies suggested the presence of catecholamines in the cytoplasm of some of the tumor cells. This patient's clinical and radiological features, including severe headache, vomiting, stiff neck, ptosis of the eye ipsilateral to the internal carotid-posterior communicating artery aneurysms, and local arterial narrowing, mimicked those of subarachnoid hemorrhage from a ruptured aneurysm. However, the clinical picture was caused by diffuse CNS dissemination of the tumor, another primary malignant schwannoma of the oculomotor nerve, and intimal fibrous thickening of the arterial wall.
Hiroshi Hasegawa, Shoji Bitoh, Hideo Otsuki, Masaaki Fujiwara, Tomio Yamamoto and Yasushi Kobayashi
Nobuhiro Tanaka, Yoshinori Fujimoto, Tadayoshi Sumida, Hideki Manabe, Kazuyoshi Nakanishi, Yasushi Fujiwara, Naosuke Kamei, Toshio Nakamae, Bunichiro Izumi and Mitsuo Ochi
In this retrospective analysis the authors describe the long-term clinical results of microsurgical transdural discectomy with laminoplasty (MTDL) in patients with cervical disc herniation (CDH).
Thirty patients (21 males, 9 females; mean age at surgery 55 years) with CDH had surgical treatments consisting of MTDL between 1990 and 1998. All patients demonstrated signs or symptoms of cervical myelopathy and/or radiculomyelopathy. Clinical outcomes were evaluated by the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) scoring system and by recovery rate (RR). The degenerative grades of the intervertebral discs were also evaluated based on preoperative, postoperative, and final follow-up MR images. The average follow-up period was 14.1 years (range 10–22 years).
Twenty (67%) of the 30 patients completed the follow-up in this study. The preoperative JOA scores in these patients averaged 11.8, and the postoperative scores at the final follow-up averaged 15.5 (average RR 69.6%). None of these patients required reoperation after MTDL. Although disc degeneration progressed during the follow-up period, there were no cases of clinical deterioration, recurrence of disc herniation, or postoperative kyphotic deformity.
Sufficient clinical results were obtained after the MTDL for a long-term follow-up period exceeding 10 years. The MTDL may be an option for an alternative procedure if the patients are correctly selected and the procedure is safely performed.
Sho Kobayashi, Yukihiro Matsuyama, Kenichi Shinomiya, Shigenori Kawabata, Muneharu Ando, Tsukasa Kanchiku, Takanori Saito, Masahito Takahashi, Zenya Ito, Akio Muramoto, Yasushi Fujiwara, Kazunobu Kida, Kei Yamada, Kanichiro Wada, Naoya Yamamoto, Kazuhiko Satomi and Toshikazu Tani
Although multimodal intraoperative spinal cord monitoring provides greater accuracy, transcranial electrical stimulation motor evoked potential (TcMEP) monitoring became the gold standard for intraoperative spinal cord monitoring. However, there is no definite alarm point for TcMEPs because a multicenter study is lacking. Thus, based on their experience with 48 true-positive cases (that is, a decrease in potentials followed by a new neurological motor deficit postoperatively) encountered between 2007 and 2009, the authors set a 70% decrease in amplitude as the alarm point for TcMEPs.
A total of 959 cases of spinal deformity, spinal cord tumor, and ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) treated between 2010 and 2012 are included in this prospective multicenter study (18 institutions). These institutions are part of the Japanese Society for Spine Surgery and Related Research monitoring working group and the study group on spinal ligament ossification. The authors prospectively analyzed TcMEP variability and pre- and postoperative motor deficits. A 70% decrease in amplitude was designated as the alarm point.
There were only 2 false-negative cases, which occurred during surgery for intramedullary spinal cord tumors. This new alarm criterion provided high sensitivity (95%) and specificity (91%) for intraoperative spinal cord monitoring and favorable accuracy, except in cases of intramedullary spinal cord tumor.
This study is the first prospective multicenter study to investigate the alarm point of TcMEPs. The authors recommend the designation of an alarm point of a 70% decrease in amplitude for routine spinal cord monitoring, particularly during surgery for spinal deformity, OPLL, and extramedullary spinal cord tumor.