Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) is one of the most common clinical entities in daily neurosurgical practice. The diagnosis and treatment are well established, but recurrence, complications, and factors related to these problems, especially in the elderly, are not completely understood. This study evaluated the clinical features, radiological findings, and surgical results in a large series of the patients treated at the same institution. 500 consecutive patients (359 men and 141 women) with CSDH were treated by burr hole craniostomy with closed system drainage from January 1987 through February 1999. Causes, clinical and computed tomographic findings, surgical results, re-expansion of brain after surgery, and hematoma recurrence were statistically analyzed to elucidate the potential risks of CSDH. Most patients (89.4%) had good recovery, 8.4% showed no change, and 2.2% worsened. Six patients (1.2%) died, three due to disseminated intravascular coagulation. Recurrence of hematoma was recognized in 49 patients (9.8%), at 1 to 8 weeks (3.5 ± 1.9 weeks) after the first operation. The brain re-expansion rate at one week after operation was 45.0 ± 21.4% in patients with hematoma recurrence and significantly lower than 55.3 ± 19.1% in patients without recurrence (p < 0.001). Old age, pre-existing cerebral infarction, and persistence of subdural air after surgery were significantly correlated with poor brain re-expansion (p < 0.001). Twenty-seven patients (5.4%) suffered postoperative complications, of which 13 cases were acute subdural hematoma caused by incomplete hemostasis of the scalp wound and four cases were tension pneumocephalus. Careful hemostasis and complete replacement of subdural hematoma by normal saline to prevent influx of air into the subdural space will further improve the surgical outcome for patients with CSDH.
The clinical, radiological, and operative factors of recurrent chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) were retrospectively analyzed in 116 patients with CSDH in 134 hemispheres, treated by one burr hole surgery. The correlation of recurrence was evaluated with personal and clinical factors such as age, sex, history of head injury, and interval from onset of initial symptoms to hospitalization; laboratory findings such as bleeding tendency and liver function; computed tomography (CT) findings such as hematoma density and brain atrophy; and operative findings such as additional procedures and postoperative residual air. The recurrence group (RG) included 10 hemispheres (7.5%) in 10 patients (8.6%). The interval from onset of symptoms to hospitalization was significantly shorter in the RG than in the nonrecurrence group (NRG). Headache was more frequently seen in the RG than in the NRG. Density of hematoma on CT was classified into five types: Low, iso, and high density, niveau, and mixed, and the incidence of recurrence was 0%, 2.3%, 17.2%, 12.5%, and 6.5%, respectively. Larger amounts of residual air in the postoperative hematoma cavity were associated with recurrence of CSDH. CSDH that progresses rapidly in the acute stage and appears as high density on preoperative CT is associated with a high incidence of recurrence. Intraoperative air invasion to the hematoma cavity should be avoided to prevent recurrence.
Adoptive immunotherapy using OK-432-activated mononuclear cells (OK-MCs) offers cell-mediated and cytokine-mediated pathways for antitumor activity. The effectiveness of direct intratumoral administration of OK-MCs via a catheter/reservoir system was studied in patients with malignant brain tumors. Seventeen patients, 12 with malignant glioma, four with metastatic adenocarcinoma, and one with primary sarcoma of the brain, were treated by OK-MC therapy (1.0 to 11.2 × 107 cells/person) between June 1989 and April 1999. The OK-MC therapy was given to patients with tumors progressing despite previous cytoreductive surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy. Adverse effects seen after the therapy were fever in 10 patients, seizure in two patients, and hypotension in one patient. Evaluation by computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging revealed that seven patients showed no change including three with minor response, and 10 showed progressive disease. Adoptive immunotherapy using OK-MC was safe and well tolerated, but the therapeutic potential is limited.
Four patients presented with intracranial hemorrhage mainly consisting of acute subdural hematoma (ASDH), who had all undergone aneurysm clipping 2-20 years earlier. Whether the clips had slipped or new trauma had caused the bleeding was difficult to determine, since the initial computed tomography showed that the subarachnoid hemorrhage or the intracerebral hematoma developed near the clips. Angiography in three patients showed that the clips had not slipped off. Three of four ASDHs appeared in the same side as the craniotomy used for the previous aneurysm surgery. Anti-platelet agents and ventriculoperitoneal shunting had been previously used in two patients with no causal signs of trauma. The outcomes were poor in three patients and one patient died. Weakening of the extra- or intracranial structure after aneurysm surgery might have been involved together with the postoperative anti-platelet agent and shunt treatment in the etiology of the present ASDH.
A 57-year-old man presented with a transient ischemic attack due to dissection of the middle cerebral artery. He suffered total aphasia and clouding of consciousness for several minutes. On admission, he was alert without neurological deficit. Magnetic resonance (MR) angiography and conventional angiography depicted irregularity and double lumen of the left middle cerebral artery. The diagnosis was dissection of the middle cerebral artery. After 1 month, he left our institute with no neurological deficit. Transient ischemic attack associated with dissection of an intracranial artery is unusual. The source images of MR angiography are useful for the essential follow up of dissection.
A 72-year-old female presented with an intra-fourth ventricular meningioma manifesting as truncal ataxia. Computed tomography (CT) showed a slightly high-density, well-demarcated, and homogeneously enhanced mass located in the fourth ventricle and extending to the right lateral recess. T2-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) imaging revealed a peritumoral high-intensity band without dural tail sign. Bilateral vertebral angiography revealed faint tumor staining supplied from the choroidal branches of the posterior inferior cerebellar arteries. The mass was totally resected via a suboccipital approach. CT, T2-weighted MR imaging, and vertebral angiography are informative for the preoperative diagnosis of fourth ventricular meningioma.
A 58-year-old male presented with a rare case of brain metastatic bronchogenic carcinoma with human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) production causing cerebellar hemorrhage with symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and headache. Bronchogenic carcinoma manifesting as gynecomastia had been resected a few months previously. Neurological examination revealed left cerebellar ataxia. Neuroimaging showed multiple cerebellar metastases with cerebellar hemorrhage adjacent to the tentorium. Angiography demonstrated tumor staining fed by the hemispheric branch of the left posterior inferior cerebellar artery. Suboccipital craniectomy was performed. The left cerebellar hematoma was evacuated and the tumor was partially removed to prevent massive intraoperative hemorrhage and avoid brain stem injury. Histological examination showed the resected tumor was large cell carcinoma. hCG was detected in the cerebrospinal fluid and was identified by immunohistochemical staining in tumor cells. The primary lesion of bronchogenic carcinoma showed choriocarcinomatous change because the tumor could produce hCG. The choriocarcinomatous cells with higher metastatic potential formed lesions in the brain, and finally intratumoral hemorrhage occurred producing the rapid development of symptoms.
A 54-year-old woman with chronic renal failure presented with tumoral calcinosis manifesting as progressive radiculomyelopathy. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a spinal epidural mass in the C-2 to C-4 levels. The clinical and radiological findings suggested malignant tumor. Resection of the lesion was performed with total C-2 laminectomy and C-3 and C-4 laminoplasty. The symptoms totally disappeared after surgery. The histological diagnosis was tumoral calcinosis. Tumoral calcinosis is a rare tumoral calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate crystal deposition disease which presents as periarticular soft tissue calcification. Tumoral calcinosis should be considered in patients with a mass lesion involving the upper cervical spine and associated with metabolic abnormalities. Surgical excision is the treatment of choice, because this is completely curative without known recurrence.
A 69-year-old woman was treated by local irradiation for a malignant lymphoma of the left parotid gland. Three years after the radiation therapy, magnetic resonance imaging revealed heterogeneously enhanced masses in the left temporal lobe and left cerebellum. Thallium-201 chloride single photon emission computed tomography (Tl-SPECT) revealed high uptake and [11C]methionine positron emission tomography (Met-PET) revealed moderate uptake in both masses. Stereotactic biopsy was performed. The histological diagnosis was radiation necrosis. She was treated with steroids. Neurosurgeons should be aware of the difficulty in differentiating tumor recurrence from radiation necrosis even with Tl-SPECT and Met-PET, and the importance of obtaining a histological diagnosis for radiation necrosis.
A 57-year-old man developed visual loss following craniofacial surgery for an inflammatory ethmoidal sinus mass. Surgery was preceded by endovascular occlusion of the ophthalmic artery distal to central retinal artery (CRA). Routine angiography obtained immediately after endovascular ophthalmic artery occlusion showed patency of the CRA. He complained of visual loss one day after craniofacial surgery (2 days after embolization). Repeat emergency angiography confirmed the patent CRA. Ophthalmic examination and fluorescein angiography showed that the visual loss was due to anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (AION). Preservation of the CRA is critical during ophthalmic artery embolization to avoid visual complications. Neurosurgeons should be aware of the possibility of AION as a complication of ophthalmic artery embolization.