Stereotactic psychosurgery is an effective method for treating some medically intractable psychiatric illnesses. However, it is unfamiliar and the long-term clinical results have not been reported in Asia. The long-term results of psychosurgery are evaluated and the neuroanatomical basis is discussed. Twenty-one patients underwent stereotactic psychosurgery for medically intractable psychiatric illnesses since 1993. All were referred from psychiatrists for these disorders. Two patients showed aggressive behavior, 12 had obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and seven had depression with anxiety disorders. Bilateral amygdalotomy and subcaudate tractotomy were performed for aggressive behavior, limbic leucotomy was performed for OCD, and subcaudate tractotomy with or without cingulotomy was performed for depression with anxiety. OCD was evaluated with the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (YBOCS), the visual analogue scale, the Clinical Global Impression Scale, and the Overt Aggression Scale (OAS). The Mini-Mental State Examination and the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised were used for the evaluation of aggressive behavior. The 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD) was used for evaluation of depression. Ventriculography was used in the first seven patients and magnetic resonance imaging-guided stereotaxy was used in the recent 14 cases for localization of the target. The lesions were made with a radiofrequency lesion generator. OAS scores in the two patients with aggressive behavior during follow up declined from 8 to 2 with clinical improvement. All 12 patients with OCD returned to their previous life and showed the mean YBOCS scores decreased from 34 to 3. Ten patients with OCD could be followed up (mean 45 months). All patients returned to their previous social life. In seven patients with depression with anxiety, HAMD scores declined from 28.5 to 16.5. There was no operative mortality and no significant morbidity except for one case of mild transient urinary incontinence. These long-term results indicate that stereotactic psychosurgery is a safe and effective method of treating some medically intractable psychiatric illnesses.
Thirty-seven of 396 patients with arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) were treated by preoperative embolization and surgical excision in our medical center between 1991 and 1997. The AVMs were Spetzler-Martin grade I in six, grade II in 11, grade III in 12, grade IV in four, and Grade V in four. A total of 69 embolization procedures were performed using estrogen alcohol and polyvinyl acetate as liquid embolization materials. AVM grades improved following embolization in 10 patients. Three hemorrhages occurred several days after the final embolization, probably due to hemodynamic stress on the unoccluded perforating feeders or drainer occlusion. Surgical resection was performed under guidance of intraoperative digital subtraction angiography. Although the AVMs were excised totally in one stage with no major neurological deficits, normal perfusion pressure breakthrough occurred in a patient with prominent collateral circulation of the AVM which developed after the main feeder embolization. Preoperative staged embolization with estrogen alcohol and polyvinyl acetate is effective to expand the surgical indication and to achieve complete resection of difficult AVMs. Direct surgery should be performed as soon as possible if hemodynamic changes are observed following embolization.
A 70-year-old male presented with progressive consciousness disturbance. He had a history of cerebrovascular accident in the left cerebral hemisphere. The initial diagnosis was newly developed extensive left cerebral hemispheric infarction based on computed tomography. However, magnetic resonance imaging and surgical findings were consistent with chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH). The preexisting neurological disease may have allowed such unexpected CSDH expansion.
A 27-year-old woman with headache and right peripheral facial nerve paresis persisting for over 25 days, and left hemiparesis for 2 days, which had all been gradually improving, was admitted to our hospital as she suddenly developed horizontal and vertical diplopia. She had right fourth and sixth cranial nerve pareses, papilledema, and right orbital venous congestion, and also experienced a seizure on the day of admission. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging and MR venography revealed complete superior and inferior sagittal sinus thromboses and significant collateral venous channels, but no parenchymal lesion. Fourth and seventh cranial nerve pareses and the left hemiparesis resolved completely within 2 days, but she concurrently developed an episode of right hemiparesis, which lasted for 30 minutes. The patient recovered with medical therapy. MR venography showed recanalization of both sinuses. She was neurologically intact except for minimal right abducens nerve paresis at discharge, 40 days after admission. Multiple cranial nerve pareses with transient ischemic attack is an extremely rare manifestation of superior sagittal sinus thrombosis. Transient functional disturbance due to temporary reduction of tissue perfusion caused by overload of the collateral channels is more likely to be responsible for the transient ischemic attack and reversible ischemic neurological deficit.
A 64-year-old male presented with subarachnoid hemorrhage. Angiography showed a dissecting aneurysm of the right vertebral artery (VA), and severe stenosis of the right internal carotid artery (ICA). He was treated conservatively in the early stage. Repeat angiography showed enlargement of the dissecting aneurysm of the VA and partial resolution of the stenosis of the right ICA. Intraaneurysmal coil embolization with proximal coil occlusion was performed following a balloon occlusion test. The postoperative course was uneventful. Based on the neuroradiological findings, the stenotic lesion of the right ICA was considered to be due to dissection. Analysis of serial changes in dissecting lesions in the craniocervical arteries is important for the correct choice of treatment, especially in patients with multi-vessel dissections. The surgical options should be determined on an individual basis.
A 29-year-old man suffered repeated subarachnoid hemorrhage and cerebral ischemic stroke over a period of 6 years. Cerebral angiography at each episode disclosed development of multiple de novo aneurysms at the bilateral middle cerebral arteries (MCAs), internal carotid arteries, right anterior cerebral artery, and right vertebral artery. Two of the ruptured aneurysms were treated by surgical and endovascular treatment, but he died of the effects of rupture of a de novo right MCA aneurysm. Histological examination at autopsy disclosed marked degenerative changes in all layers of the cerebral vessels, which were probably congenital in origin.
Conventional angiography detected three cases of aberrant right subclavian artery. A 51-year-old female presented with a small infarction in the left medulla oblongata and severe stenosis of the left subclavian artery. A 59-year-old female presented with multiple cerebral infarctions and severe atherosclerotic changes in the intracranial arteries. A 58-year-old female presented with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage. The aberrant right subclavian artery was asymptomatic in all patients. Knowledge of this anatomical variation is important in diagnostic neuroangiography and interventional neuroradiology.
A 9-year-old girl with a 1-month history of generalized seizure presented with a distinctive tumor resembling pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma. Neuroimagings showed a right frontotemporal lobe tumor. Histological examination of the resected tumor indicated similarity to pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma without staining for glial fibrillary acidic protein. The neuronal immunoreactivity and ultrastructural features showed two discrepancies: Numerous cytoplasmic processes containing rich structures suspected to be microtubules and neurofilaments were present, but neurofilament protein 70 kd/200 kd staining was negative; and many tumor cells showed synaptophysin staining, but no synaptic structures or vesicles were observed. She suffered recurrence 14 months after the first surgery. The specimen from the second operation revealed no malignant transformation with a MIB-1 labeling index of 1.9%. Only 2 months after the second operation, there was a second recurrence. Irradiation was administered (60.2 Gy). Twenty-eight months later, no tumor progression was seen. This tumor was an unconventional type with “abortive” or “aberrant” neuronal differentiation or an extreme variant of pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma.
A 50-year-old man presented with neuro-Behçet's disease (NBD) manifesting as a large neoplasm-like lesion affecting the brainstem, basal ganglia, and white matter of the cerebral hemisphere. He had no history of disease except for psychoneurosis. On admission, neurological examination found left hemiparesis and dysarthria. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging showed multiple small ring-like enhancement in the basal ganglia, brainstem, and deep white matter. Biopsy of the mass was performed. Histological examination revealed invasion of inflammatory cells in the white matter, especially around the blood vessels. After the brain biopsy, the patient developed oral aphthae, genital ulcers, and skin eruptions, which are indicative of Behçet's disease. MR imaging after three courses of steroid pulse therapy revealed that the edematous lesion had become smaller with minimum midline shift. NBD should be considered in the differential diagnosis of lesions with multiple ring-like enhancement extending from the basal ganglia to the brainstem, because dermatological manifestations are sometimes obscured during periods of remission.
A 38-year-old woman with Chiari I malformation presented with spinal cord edema preceding syringomyelia manifesting as a 5-month history of nuchal pain and numbness of the upper extremities. Magnetic resonance imaging showed spinal cord edema, a poorly defined syrinx at the C-2 to T-2 levels, and distorted cerebellar tonsils. Computed tomography revealed cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) density in the center of spinal cord edema, and positron emission tomography revealed no uptake of L-[methyl- 11C]methionine, indicating a non-neoplastic lesion. Craniocervical decompression achieved excellent clinical and neuroradiological outcomes. The success of surgical treatment supports the theory that patients with Chiari I malformation have increased transmural flow of CSF, causing spinal cord edema that progresses to syringomyelia. Early treatment of patients with spinal cord edema is indicated to prevent permanent spinal cord injury due to progressive syringomyelia.
A 56-year-old male presented with fulminant subdural empyema manifesting as rhinorrhea, periorbital cellulitis, fever, convulsions, and consciousness disturbance. Neuroimaging showed pansinusitis with skull destruction and extensive subdural empyema. Decompressive craniectomy, irrigation of the empyema, and subdural drainage were performed. Endoscopic sinus surgery was performed to remove the source of infection at the same time. Streptococcus milleri was cultured from the pus. Continuous irrigation of the subdural space with saline containing gentamicin for 7 days resulted in prompt elimination of pus and debris. The patient was discharged with only a slight neurological deficit.