Support of the anterior column with allografts in tuberculosis of the spine.
Fresh-frozen allografts from the humerus were used to help to stabilise the spine after anterior decompression for tuberculosis in 47 children with a mean age of 4.2 years (2 to 9). The average angle of the gibbus, before operation, was 53 degrees; at follow-up, two years later, it was 15 degrees. Rejection of the graft or deep sepsis was not seen. Cross trabeculation between the allograft and the vertebral body was observed at six months, with remodelling occurring at approximately 30 months. (+info)
Spondyloptosis and multiple-level spondylolysis.
An unusual case of a combination of multiple bilateral spondylolyses (L2, 3 and 4), spondylolisthesis at L3/4, spondyloptosis at L4/5 and sacralization of L5 in a teenage female is described. The patient had severely increasing lower back pain radiating to the left lower limb. Radiography identified the abnormalities and myelography revealed complete obstruction and compression of the thecal sac at the L4/5 level. The case was treated surgically by posterior decompression, corpectomy and fusion in a three-stage operation. The follow-up was extended to 2 years with no complications. No similar case has previously been reported. (+info)
Neurovascular decompression for trigeminal neuralgia in elderly patients.
The operative findings and outcomes of neurovascular decompression for trigeminal neuralgia were compared between patients aged 75 years and older (elderly group, 17 patients) and patients aged under 75 years (nonelderly group, 115 patients). There were no statistically significant differences in the operative findings or outcomes between the two groups, except in the percentage of patients who had been treated with carbamazepine. Neurovascular decompression for trigeminal neuralgia can be performed in elderly patients with the same operative results as in nonelderly patients. If other treatments (especially carbamazepine treatment) prove ineffective, neurovascular decompression should be considered in elderly patients before they become too old to undergo surgery. However, neurovascular decompression in elderly patients requires great care, as the venous system, including the superior petrosal vein, should be preserved and retraction of the cerebellum should be avoided whenever possible to maintain correct blood circulation in the cerebellum and brainstem. (+info)
Decompressive craniectomy, reperfusion, or a combination for early treatment of acute "malignant" cerebral hemispheric stroke in rats? Potential mechanisms studied by MRI.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Both early reperfusion and decompressive craniectomy have proved beneficial in the treatment of large space-occupying "malignant" hemispheric stroke. The aim of this study was to directly compare the benefit of reperfusion with that of craniectomy and to study the effects of combined treatment in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemia. METHODS: Cerebral ischemia was introduced in 28 rats. Four groups were investigated: (1) no treatment, (2) decompressive craniectomy, (3) reperfusion, and (4) reperfusion and craniectomy as treatment at 1 hour after middle cerebral artery occlusion. Perfusion- and diffusion-weighted MRI were performed serially from 0.5 to 6 hours after middle cerebral artery occlusion. RESULTS: The 6-hour DWI-derived hemispheric lesion volumes in the reperfusion group (10.2+/-3.9%), the craniectomy group (23.0+/-6.4%), and the combination group (21.8+/-12.4) were significantly smaller than that in the control group (44.1+/-5.4%) (P<0.05). Reperfusion, craniectomy, and combined treatment led to higher perfusion in the cortex compared with the control group, whereas only reperfused animals achieved significantly higher perfusion in the basal ganglia. In 5 animals, combined reperfusion and decompressive craniectomy resulted in an early contrast media enhancement. CONCLUSIONS: Early reperfusion and craniectomy were shown to be effective in decreasing infarction volume by improving cerebral perfusion. Reperfusion remains the best therapy in malignant hemispheric stroke. Combined treatment yields no additional benefit compared with single treatment, probably because of early blood-brain barrier breakdown. (+info)
The use of subcutaneous drains to manage subcutaneous emphysema.
Subcutaneous emphysema is a frequent complication of thoracic and cardiac surgical procedures, and emergency tracheostomy is often advocated as the treatment for this complication. However, we report the case of a patient in whom massive subcutaneous emphysema, which had developed after emergent replacement of the aortic root, was relieved using subcutaneous drains and suction, instead of a tracheostomy. We found that the subcutaneous drains provided effective decompression of the head and neck areas, and markedly reduced airway pressure and subcutaneous air. We recommend subcutaneous drains for safe, effective, and inexpensive management of massive subcutaneous emphysema. (+info)
Decreases in blood pressure and sympathetic nerve activity by microvascular decompression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla in essential hypertension.
BACKGROUND: Neurovascular compression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla, a major center regulating sympathetic nerve activity, may be causally related to essential hypertension. Microvascular decompression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla decreases elevated blood pressure. CASE DESCRIPTION: A 47-year-old male essential hypertension patient with hemifacial nerve spasms exhibited neurovascular compression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla and facial nerve. Microvascular decompression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla successfully reduced blood pressure and plasma and urine norepinephrine levels, low-frequency to high-frequency ratio obtained by power spectral analysis, and muscle sympathetic nerve activity. CONCLUSIONS: This case suggests not only that reduction in blood pressure by microvascular decompression of the rostral ventrolateral medulla may be mediated by a decrease in sympathetic nerve activity but also that neurovascular compression of this area may be a cause of blood pressure elevation via increased sympathetic nerve activity. (+info)
Craniocervical junction synovial cyst associated with atlanto-axial dislocation--case report.
A 51-year-old female presented with a rare case of synovial cyst at the cruciate ligament of the odontoid process associated with atlanto-axial dislocation, manifesting as a history of headache and numbness in her left extremities for 5 months, and progressive motor weakness of her left leg. Neuroimaging studies revealed a small cystic lesion behind the dens, which severely compressed the upper cervical cord, and atlanto-axial dislocation. The cyst was successfully removed via the transcondylar approach. C-1 laminectomy and foramen magnum decompression were also performed. Posterior craniocervical fusion was carried out to stabilize the atlanto-axial dislocation. The cyst contained mucinous material. Histological examination detected synovial cells lining the fibrocartilaginous capsule. Synovial cysts of this region do not have typical symptoms or characteristic radiographic features. Careful preoperative evaluation of the symptoms and a less invasive strategy for removal of the cyst are recommended. (+info)
Predictors of outcome in cauda equina syndrome.
This retrospective review examined the cause, level of pathology, onset of symptoms, time taken to treatment, and outcome of 19 patients with cauda equina syndrome (CES). The minimum time to follow up was 22 months. Logistical regression analysis was used to determine how these factors influenced the eventual outcome. Out of 19 patients, 14 had satisfactory recovery at 2 years post-decompression; 5 patients were left with some residual dysfunction. The mean time to decompression in the group with a satisfactory outcome was 14 h (range 6-24 h) whilst that of the group with the poor outcome was 30 h (range 20-72 h). There was a clear correlation between delayed decompression and a poor outcome (P = 0.023). Saddle hypoaesthesia was evident in all patients. In addition complete perineal anaesthesia was evident in 7/19 patients, 5 of whom developed a poor outcome. Bladder dysfunction was observed in 19/19 patients, with 12/19 regarded as having significant impairment. Of the five patients identified as having a poor overall outcome, all five presented with a significant sphincter disturbance and 4/5 were left with residual sphincter dysfunction. There was a clear correlation between the presence of complete perineal anaesthesia and significant sphincter dysfunction as both univariate and multivariate predictors of a poor overall outcome. The association between a slower onset of CES and a more favourable outcome did not reach statistical significance (P = 0.052). No correlation could be found between initial motor function loss, bilateral sciatica, level or cause of injury as predictors of a poor outcome (P>0.05). CES can be diagnosed early by judicious physical examination, with particular attention to perineal sensation and a history of urinary dysfunction. The most important factors identified in this series as predictors of a favourable outcome in CES were early diagnosis and early decompression. (+info)