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Ying Chen, Linyan Zhang, Tingting Qin, Zhenzhen Wang, Ying Li and Bing Gu

OBJECTIVE

Various implanted materials are used in neurosurgery; however, there remains a lack of pooled data on infection rates (IRs) and infective bacteria over past decades. The goal of this study was to investigate implant infections in neurosurgical procedures in a longitudinal retrospective study and to evaluate the IRs of neurosurgically implanted materials and the distribution of pathogenic microorganisms.

METHODS

A systematic literature search was conducted using PubMed and Web of Science databases for the time period between 1968 and 2018. Neurosurgical implant infections were studied in 5 subgroups, including operations or diseases, implanted materials, bacteria, distribution by country, and time periods, which were obtained from the literature and statistically analyzed. In this meta-analysis, statistical heterogeneity across studies was tested by using p values and I2 values between studies of associated pathogens. Egger’s test was used for assessing symmetries of funnel plots with Stata 11.0 software. Methodological quality was assessed to judge the risk of bias according to the Cochrane Handbook.

RESULTS

A total of 22,971 patients from 227 articles satisfied the study’s eligibility criteria. Of these, 1118 cases of infection were reported, and the overall IR was 4.87%. In this study, the neurosurgical procedures or disorders with the top 3 IRs included craniotomy (IR 6.58%), cranioplasty (IR 5.89%), and motor movement disorders (IR 5.43%). Among 13 implanted materials, the implants with the top 3 IRs included polypropylene-polyester, titanium, and polyetheretherketone (PEEK), which were 8.11%, 8.15%, and 7.31%, respectively. Furthermore, the main causative pathogen was Staphylococcus aureus and the countries with the top 3 IRs were Denmark (IR 11.90%), Korea (IR 10.98%), and Mexico (IR 9.26%). Except for the low IR from 1998 to 2007, the overall implant IR after neurosurgical procedures was on the rise.

CONCLUSIONS

In this study, the main pathogen in neurosurgery was S. aureus, which can provide a certain reference for the clinic. In addition, the IRs of polypropylene-polyester, titanium, and PEEK were higher than other materials, which means that more attention should be paid to them. In short, the total IR was high in neurosurgical implants and should be taken seriously.

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Lin-Feng Wang, Ying-Ze Zhang, Yong Shen, Yan-Ling Su, Jia-Xin Xu, Wen-Yuan Ding and Ying-Hua Zhang

Object

The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical significance of both the signal intensity ratio obtained from MR imaging and clinical manifestations on the prognosis of patients with cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament.

Methods

The authors retrospectively reviewed the records of 58 patients with cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament who underwent cervical laminoplasty from February 1999 to July 2007. Magnetic resonance imaging (1.5-T) was performed in all patients before surgery. Sagittal T2-weighted images of the cervical spinal cord compressed by the ossified posterior longitudinal ligament showed increased intramedullary signal intensity, whereas the sagittal images obtained at the C7–T1 disc levels were of normal intensity. The signal intensity ratio between regions of intramedullary increased signal intensity and the normal C7–T1 disc level was calculated based on the signal intensity values generated from the MR imaging workstation. Patients were divided into 3 groups according to their signal intensity ratio (high, intermediate, and low signal intensity groups).

Results

There were significant differences between the 3 groups regarding recovery rate (p < 0.001), age (p = 0.022), duration of disease (p = 0.001), Babinski sign (p < 0.001), ankle clonus (p < 0.001), and both pre- and postoperative Japanese Orthopaedic Association score (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference in sex among the 3 groups (p = 0.391).

Conclusions

Patients with low signal intensity ratios that changed on T2-weighted imaging experienced a good surgical outcome. Low increased signal intensity might reflect mild neuropathological alteration in the spinal cord and greater recuperative potential. An increased signal intensity ratio with positive pyramidal signs indicates less recuperative potential of the spinal cord and a poor surgical outcome.

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Yisen Zhang, Zhongbin Tian, Chuzhong Li, Jian Liu, Ying Zhang, Xinjian Yang and Yazhuo Zhang

OBJECTIVE

Internal carotid artery (ICA) injuries during endoscopic endonasal surgery (EES) are catastrophic complications. Alongside the advancements in medical instrumentation and material, there is a need to modify previous treatment modalities and principles.

METHODS

A retrospective review of 3658 patients who underwent EES performed at the authors’ institution between January 2012 and December 2017 was conducted. Ultimately, 20 patients (0.55%) with ICA injury following EES were enrolled for analysis. Data collection included demographic data, preoperative diagnosis, injury setting, repair method, and immediate and follow-up angiographic and clinical outcomes.

RESULTS

Among the 20 patients, 11 received immediate endovascular therapy and 9 were treated only with packing. Of the 11 patients who received endovascular treatment, 6 were treated by covered stent and 5 by parent artery occlusion (PAO). The preservation rate of injured ICA increased from 20.0% (1 of 5) to 83.3% (5 of 6) after the Willis covered stent graft became available in January 2016. Of the 20 patients in the study, 19 recovered well and 1 patient—who had a pseudoaneurysm and was treated by PAO with a detachable balloon—suffered epistaxis after the hemostat in her nasal cavity was removed in ward, and she died later that day. The authors speculated that the detachable balloon had shifted to the distal part of ICA, although the patient could not undergo a repeat angiogram because she quickly suffered shock and could not be transferred to the catheter room. After the introduction of a hybrid operating room (OR), one patient whose first angiogram showed no ICA injury was found to have a pseudoaneurysm. He received endovascular treatment when he was brought for a repeat angiogram 5 days later in the hybrid OR after removing the hemostat in his nasal cavity. Of the 4 surviving patients treated with PAO, no external carotid artery–ICA bypass was required. The authors propose a modified endovascular treatment protocol for ICA injuries suffered during EES that exploits the advantage of the covered stent graft and the hybrid OR.

CONCLUSIONS

The endovascular treatment protocol used in this study for ICA injuries during EES was helpful in the management of this rare complication. Willis stent placement improved the preservation rate of injured ICA during EES. It would be highly advantageous to manage this complication in a hybrid OR or by a mobile C-arm to get a clear intraoperative angiogram.

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Yingsong Wang, Jingming Xie, Zhi Zhao, Ying Zhang, Tao Li and Yongyu Si

Object

Phase contrast–cine MRI (PC-cine MRI) studies in patients with syringomyelia and Chiari malformation Type I (CM-I) have demonstrated abnormal CSF flow across the foramen magnum, which can revert to normal after craniocervical decompression with syrinx shrinkage. In order to investigate the mechanisms leading to postoperative syringomyelia shrinkage, the authors studied the hydrodynamic changes of CSF flow in the craniocervical junction and spinal canal in patients with scoliosis associated with syringomyelia after one-stage deformity correction by posterior vertebral column resection.

Methods

Preoperative and postoperative CSF flow dynamics at the levels of the foramen magnum, C-7, T-7 (or apex), and L-1 were assessed by electrocardiogram-synchronized cardiac-gated PC-cine MRI in 8 adolescent patients suffering from severe scoliosis with syringomyelia and CM-I (scoliosis group) and undergoing posterior vertebral column resection. An additional 8 patients with syringomyelia and CM-I without spinal deformity (syrinx group) and 8 healthy volunteers (control group) were also enrolled. Mean values were obtained for the following parameters: the duration of a CSF cycle, the duration of caudad CSF flow (CSF downflow [DF]) and cephalad CSF flow (CSF upflow [UF]), the ratio of DF duration to CSF cycle duration (DF%), and the ratio of UF duration to CSF cycle duration (UF%). The ratio of the stationary phase (SP) duration to CSF cycle duration was calculated (SP%). The maximum downflow velocities (VDmax) and maximum upflow velocities (VUmax) were measured. SPSS (version 14.0) was used for all statistical analysis.

Results

Patients in the scoliosis group underwent one-stage posterior vertebral column resection for deformity correction without suboccipital decompression. The mean preoperative coronal Cobb angle was 102.4° (range 76°–138°). The mean postoperative Cobb angle was 41.7° (range 12°–75°), with an average correction rate of 59.3%. During the follow-up, 1 patient with hypermyotonia experienced a significant decrease of muscle tension and 1 patient with reduced anal sphincter tone manifested recovery. A total of 5 patients demonstrated a significant decrease (> 30%) in syrinx size. With respect to changes in CSF flow dynamics, the syrinx group was characterized by slower and shorter downflow than the control group, and the difference was more significant at the foramen magnum and C-7 levels. In patients with scoliosis, CSF downflow at the foramen magnum level was significantly restricted, and a prolonged stationary phase indicated increased obstruction of CSF flow. After posterior vertebral column resection, the peak velocity of CSF flow at the foramen magnum increased, and the downflow phase duration was markedly prolonged. The parameters showed a return to almost normal CSF dynamics at the craniocervical region, and this improvement was maintained for 6–12 months of follow-up.

Conclusions

There were distinct abnormalities of CSF flow at the craniocervical junction in patients with syringomyelia. Abnormal dynamics of downflow could be aggravated by associated severe spinal deformity and improved by correction via posterior vertebral column resection.

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Ahmed J. Awad, Terry C. Burns, Ying Zhang and Roger Abounader

Glioblastoma multiforme is the most common and most lethal of all primary brain tumors. Even with the standard therapy, life expectancy is still poor, with an average survival of approximately 14 months following initial diagnosis. Hence, there is an urgent need for novel treatment strategies that inhibit proliferation and angiogenesis in high-grade gliomas. One such strategy consists of inhibiting receptor tyrosine kinases, including MET and/or its ligand hepatocyte growth factor (HGF). Because of their widespread involvement in human cancer, HGF and MET have emerged as promising therapeutic targets, and some inhibitory agents that target them have already entered clinical trials. In this paper, the authors highlight recent evidence implicating HGF/MET pathway deregulation in glioblastoma multiforme, discuss therapeutic approaches to inhibit HGF/MET signaling, and summarize ongoing clinical trials targeting this pathway.

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Jiang Liu, Yue Yuan, Ying Fang, Li Zhang, Xiao-Li Xu, Hong-Ju Liu, Zhe Zhang and Yan-Bing Yu

OBJECT

Typical hemifacial spasm (HFS) commonly initiates from the orbicularis oculi muscle to the orbicularis oris muscle. Atypical HFS (AHFS) is different from typical HFS, in which the spasm of muscular orbicularis oris is the primary presenting symptom. The objective of this study was to analyze the sites of compression and the effectiveness of microvascular decompression (MVD) for AHFS.

METHODS

The authors retrospectively analyzed the clinical data for 12 consecutive patients who underwent MVD for AHFS between July 2008 and July 2013.

RESULTS

Postoperatively, complete remission of facial spasm was found in 10 of the 12 patients, which gradually disappeared after 2 months in 2 patients. No recurrence of spasm was observed during follow-up. Immediate postoperative facial paralysis accompanied by hearing loss occurred in 1 patient and temporary hearing loss with tinnitus in 2. All 3 patients with complications had gradual improvement during the follow-up period.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors conclude that most cases of AHFS were caused by neurovascular compression on the posterior/rostral side of the facial nerve distal to the root entry zones. MVD is a safe treatment for AHFS, but the incidence of postoperative complications, such as facial paralysis and decrease in hearing, remains high.

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Yan-Chun Wu, Zan Ding, Jiang Wu, Yuan-Yuan Wang, Sheng-Chao Zhang, Ye Wen, Wen-Ya Dong and Qing-Ying Zhang

The authors analyzed the association between the standard deviation or the coefficient of variation in the glucose value, strong independent indexes for determining glycemic variability, and the prognosis of intracerebral hemorrhage. They found that glycemic variability may be associated with a poor outcome in intracerebral hemorrhage.

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Chuanhui Li, Shengzhang Wang, Jialiang Chen, Hongyu Yu, Ying Zhang, Fan Jiang, Shiqing Mu, Haiyun Li and Xinjian Yang

Object

Some totally occluded intracranial aneurysms may recur. The role of hemodynamic mechanisms in this process remains to be elucidated. The authors used computational fluid dynamic analysis and investigated the local hemodynamic characteristics at the aneurysm neck before and after total embolization, attempting to identify hemodynamic risk factors leading to recurrence of totally embolized aneurysms.

Methods

Between May 2008 and June 2010, the authors recruited 17 consecutive patients with totally occluded intracranial aneurysms (7 recanalized and 10 stable lesions). Using patient-specific 3D digital subtraction angiography data, the hemodynamic features before and after embolization were retrospectively characterized.

Results

The overall preembolization blood flow patterns were nearly the same in the recanalized and stable groups, with no significant difference in either the maximum wall shear stress (WSS) (p = 0.914) or the spatially averaged WSS (p = 0.322) at peak systole at the aneurysm neck. After occlusion, the overall flow pattern changed, and the WSS distribution at the treated aneurysm neck differed in the 2 groups. In all of the 7 recanalized cases, both the maximum WSS and spatially averaged WSS at peak systole at the treated aneurysm neck were higher than those at the aneurysm neck before embolization. In contrast, both parameters were decreased in 70%–80% of the stable cases. After embolization, both the maximum WSS (p = 0.021) and spatially averaged WSS (p = 0.041) at peak systole at the treated aneurysm neck were higher in the recanalized group than in the stable group.

Conclusions

Higher WSS at the treated aneurysm neck after total embolization can be an important hemodynamic factor that contributes to aneurysm recurrence after endovascular treatment.

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Zhuo-Ying Du, Xiang Gao, Xiao-Luo Zhang, Zhi-Qiu Wang and Wei-Jun Tang

Object

In this paper the authors' goal was to evaluate the feasibility and efficacy of a virtual reality (VR) system in preoperative planning for microvascular decompression (MVD) procedures treating idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia and hemifacial spasm. The system's role in surgical simulation and training was also assessed.

Methods

Between May 2008 and April 2009, the authors used the Dextroscope system to visualize the neurovascular complex and simulate MVD in the cerebellopontine angle in a VR environment in 16 patients (6 patients had trigeminal neuralgia and 10 had hemifacial spasm). Reconstructions were carried out 2–3 days before MVD. Images were printed in a red-blue stereoscopic format for teaching and discussion and were brought into the operating room to be compared with real-time intraoperative findings.

Results

The VR environment was a powerful aid for spatial understanding of the neurovascular relationship in MVD for operating surgeons and trainees. Through an initial series of comparison/confirmation experiences, the senior neurosurgeon became accustomed to the system. He could predict intraoperative problems and simulate surgical maneuvering, which increased his confidence in performing the procedure.

Conclusions

The Dextroscope system is an easy and rapid method to create a stereoscopic neurovascular model for MVD that is highly concordant with intraoperative findings. It effectively shortens the learning curve and adds to the surgeon's confidence.

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Huina Zhang, Frank La Marca, Scott J. Hollister, Steven A. Goldstein and Chia-Ying Lin

Object

The goal in this study was to develop a convenient, less-invasive animal model to monitor progression of intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration for future testing of new treatments for disc degeneration.

Methods

Level 5/6 and 7/8 IVDs of rat caudal spine were stabbed laterally with 18- or 21-gauge hypodermic needles to a depth of 5 mm from the subcutaneous surface with the aid of fluoroscopy. In vivo MR imaging studies were performed at 4, 8, and 12 weeks postsurgery to monitor progression of IVD degeneration. Histological analysis including H & E and safranin O staining, and immunohistochemical studies of collagen type II and bone morphogenetic protein receptor type II (BMPRII) were assessed at 12 weeks postsurgery.

Results

The 18- and 21-gauge needle–stabbed discs illustrated decreases in both the T2 density and MR imaging index starting at 4 weeks, with no evidence of spontaneous recovery by 12 weeks. Histological staining demonstrated a decreased nucleus pulposus (NP) area, and the NP–anulus fibrosus border became unclear during the progression of disc degeneration. Similar patterns of degenerative signs were also shown in both safranin O– and collagen type II–stained sections. The BMPRII immunohistochemical analysis of stabbed discs demonstrated an increase in BMPRII expression in the remaining NP cells and became stronger in anulus fibrosus with the severity of disc degeneration.

Conclusions

After introducing an 18- or 21-gauge needle into the NP area of discs in the rat tail, the stabbed disc showed signs of degeneration in terms of MR imaging and histological outcome measurements. Changes in BMPRII expression in this animal model provide an insight for the effectiveness of delivering BMPs into the region responsible for chondrogenesis for disc repair. This convenient, less-invasive, reproducible, and cost-effective model may be a useful choice for testing novel treatments for disc degeneration.