The topographic anatomy and morphometry of the fornix is important for standardizing the transcallosal-interforniceal approach and avoiding memory disturbances. The detailed morphometry of the fornix was investigated with a special emphasis on sex differences using midsagittal magnetic resonance imaging of 80 males and 102 females. Various parameters of the fornix, including the length of the upper and lower fornices, the curvature of the upper and lower fornices, and the insertion point of the fornix to corpus callosum, were investigated. The thickness of the fornix at the attachment point to the anterior commissure, the maximum distance to the upper and lower surfaces of the fornix, and the curvature of the upper and lower fornices showed sex differences (p < 0.5). The upper insertion point of the fornix to the corpus callosum was more frontal in females, but the functional relevance of these differences need further investigation.
The recovery process of immediate posttraumatic coma was investigated in 24 patients with severe head injury. The correlation between poor outcome in the recovery process and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging findings was analyzed. MR imaging was performed within the first 7 days for all patients. The recovery process was classified into phase 1 for recovery to moderately disabled and phase 2 to good recovery (GR) according to the Glasgow Outcome Scale. The median of phase 1 was 21.0 days. Four patients did not recover to GR and had poor outcome. Twenty patients recovered to GR. Thirteen patients had short phase 2 of under 10 days and seven patients had long phase 2 of over 60 days. All patients had abnormal lesions on MR imaging considered to be diffuse axonal injury. The number of lesions ranged from two to 10, with a mean of five. Lesions in the dorsal upper brainstem were significantly associated with poor outcome (p < 0.05). The combination of focal lesions in the callosal splenium and dorsal upper brainstem was most common in patients with poor outcome. Patients with long phase 2 had significantly more lesions than patients with short phase 2.
Inflammatory reaction is very important for formation of the neomembrane of chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH). The present study evaluated medical treatment with the platelet-activating factor receptor antagonist, etizolam, for the resolution of CSDH, and the factors indicating surgery or conservative therapy. Alternate patients were assigned to the etizolam group or control group without medical treatment. Patients in the etizolam group received 3.0 mg etizolam per day for 14 days. A total of 53 patients were followed up for at least 6 months. Univariate analysis of differences in demographic characteristics, clinical findings, and initial computed tomography (CT) findings, and multiple logistic regression analysis of the relationship between etizolam treatment and requirement for surgery using age, sex, low density of hematoma on CT, and paresis as confounders were performed. Etizolam treatment (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0.156, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.024-0.999, p = 0.049) was negatively correlated with requirement for surgery. Low density of hematoma (adjusted OR 0.125, 95% CI 0.019-0.846, p = 0.033) was found to be an independent negative predictor, and paresis as an initial symptom (adjusted OR 6.35, 95% CI 1.04-38.7, p = 0.045) was an independent positive predictor of requirement for surgery. Etizolam administration can promote the resolution of CSDH, especially at the stage of hygroma appearing as low density on CT. Surgery is recommended if the patient presents with paresis.
A 79-year-old man with a cardiac pacemaker for bradycardia fell down and presented with sudden onset of right hemiplegia and aphasia. Initial computed tomography (CT) showed no cerebral infarction but angiography revealed occlusion of the left middle cerebral artery (MCA). Local intra-arterial thrombolysis with tissue plasminogen activator (tPA; tisokinase, 1,600,000 units) was performed 3 hours after the onset, and the MCA was partially recanalized. Further administration of tPA was suspended because of nosebleed. However, the patient’s neurological findings did not improve. His consciousness gradually deteriorated to coma and quadriplegia with dilation of the left pupil 2.5 hours after thrombolysis. CT disclosed marked mass effect with a left acute subdural hematoma and a small intracerebral hematoma in the left frontal lobe. He underwent urgent craniotomy and removal of the subdural hematoma. The subdural hematoma originated in a frontal cerebral contusion. He died of severe brain edema 2 days after surgery. Acute subdural hematoma is a very rare complication of intra-arterial thrombolysis. Presumably he had suffered head trauma at the first onset. Evidence of head trauma should be considered a contraindication for the use of thrombolytic agents in a patient with acute stroke.
A 59-year-old woman with type IIA von Willebrand’s disease (VWD) presented with subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Computed tomography showed SAH in the right sylvian fissure and intracranial hemorrhage in the right temporal lobe. Angiography demonstrated an aneurysm at the bifurcation of the right middle cerebral artery. Neck clipping was performed on the 3rd day after the onset with intra- and postoperative administration of factor VIII/von Willebrand factor concentrate. No excessive bleeding occurred. Patients with prolonged bleeding time should be screened for VWD before surgery. This is a rare case of VWD presenting with SAH secondary to ruptured intracranial aneurysm. The clinical characteristics and the management of SAH in a patient with VWD are discussed.
A 55-year-old woman presented with consciousness disorders. Computed tomography revealed hemorrhage in the left temporoparietal region. The angiographic diagnosis was progressive sinus thrombosis from the superior sagittal sinus to the bilateral transverse sinuses. Her condition deteriorated despite heparin administration. Therefore, mechanical thrombolysis was performed for sinus thrombosis using a balloon catheter, in addition to supportive thrombolytic therapy with urokinase, resulting in sinus patency. Mechanical thrombolysis is an effective therapeutic modality for sinus thrombosis refractory to heparin administration.
A 61-year-old man with severe factor XII deficiency presented with a subdural hematoma appearing as mixed but mainly high density by computed tomography in the left frontotemporoparietal region. No cranial injury was reported in the medical history of the patient. Clotting system study showed less than 1% functional activity of factor XII, whereas the levels of the other clotting factors were within the normal ranges. Partially clotted and hemolyzed subdural hematoma was removed through a craniotomy. The postoperative course was uneventful. The patient later died of severe circulatory-respiratory failure. We believe that the subdural hematoma may have developed as a result of a minor head trauma sustained in the past. We suggest that impairment of fibrinolytic activation related to severe factor XII deficiency might have contributed to the delay of dissolution of the subdural hematoma which, under ordinary circumstances, would have formed chronic subdural hematoma.
A 59-year-old male presented with spinal subdural hematoma (SDH) with concomitant cranial chronic SDH manifesting as mild paraparesis and numbness in both lower extremities. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging showed simultaneous occurrence of cranial and spinal SDHs. The patient was treated conservatively because of poor medical condition and mild neurological symptoms, and recovered well within 1 month. Serial follow-up MR imaging revealed spontaneous resolution of both lesions, with signal intensity changes suggesting the degenerative process of subacute hematoma. The spinal hematoma may have migrated from the cranial lesion. Spinal SDH is a potential sequela of chronic SDH in the cranium.
Delayed methotrexate (MTX) elimination occurred in two patients with primary central nervous system lymphoma undergoing high-dose MTX treatment. Oral administration of the anion exchange resin colestimide, which binds MTX effectively in vitro, effectively accelerated MTX elimination. Colestimide probably interrupts the enterohepatic circulation, and is a potential oral antidote to MTX toxicity.
An 86-year-old man presented with intermittent claudication caused by a cyst of the ligamentum flavum. Lumbar magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated an extradural cystic mass at the L5-S1 intervertebral space and canal stenosis at the L4-5 space. L-5 laminectomy and flavectomy at the L4-5 and L5-S1 spaces were performed, and the cystic mass was excised. The histological features were consistent with cyst of the ligamentum flavum. The histological diagnosis was ganglion cyst of the ligamentum flavum. After surgery, claudication completely disappeared and the patient made a good recovery.
Patients with primary malignant brain tumor experience deterioration of multi-focal neurological deficits such as hemiparesis, aphasia, visual field defects, dysphagia, and disturbance of recent memory at the advanced stage of disease. With these advancing neurological deficits, many patients will inevitably prepare for death and may experience psychological and spiritual distress. Active listening is an important skill to explore the fears of patients with a terminal illness but in the advanced stage of a primary brain tumor, patients usually have great difficulty with verbal expression. Even if patients do not suffer from complete expressive aphasia, they often have difficulty verbalizing their thoughts and feelings. Sadly, disturbance of vocal expression is a common accompaniment of this pathology. Unless the pathophysiology is understood, an observer may fail to comprehend the patient's non-verbal communication. Seeking to understand these issues is a prerequisite of the preservation of dignity and provision of ethical care for such patients.