Publications by authors named "Walid Ibn Essayed"

26 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Resection of a Medulla Oblongata Hemangioblastoma: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jul 31. Epub 2021 Jul 31.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Hemangioblastomas are benign vascular tumors that can be sporadic or multiple, as part of Von Hippel-Lindau disease. They develop at any level of the central nervous system, with a predilection for the dorsal medulla among brainstem locations. Radical resection of the solid portion of the tumor is the best treatment option.1,2 The resection should be en bloc to avoid uncontrollable intraoperative hemorrhage hindering safe dissection. Preservation of the venous drainage during the progressive dissection of the tumor of the surrounding structures and interruption of numerous small arterial feeders is a tenet for safe surgical resection.3 Once the tumor is completely disconnected, the large draining veins can be coagulated, and the tumor removed. We demonstrate these technical principles in the surgery of a 30-yr-old female with an exophytic hemangioblastoma from the dorsal medulla obstructing the fourth ventricle outflow. We demonstrate the resection of this lesion through a suboccipital craniotomy in a sitting position.4 The patient consented to the surgery and publication of images. Image at 1:26 from Kadri and Al-Mefty,4 by permission from the Congress of Neurological Surgeons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab278DOI Listing
July 2021

Metachronous Skull Base Paraganglioma Surgical Management: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jul 22. Epub 2021 Jul 22.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Paragangliomas (PGLs) are benign hypervascular tumors that can develop in head and neck at different locations, primarily in the carotid bifurcation, jugular bulb, tympanic plexus, and vagal ganglia.1 Different gene mutations have been linked to the familial inherited forms, which can represent approximately 30% of all PGLs.1,2 These are classified into 5 different clinical syndromes: PGL 1 to 5.1 These patients have increased risk for synchronous and metachronous lesions requiring an extensive work-up for hormone secretion and other associated neoplasms, as well as attentive follow-up for lifelong management.1,3 Surgical resection is the best treatment option as it can be curative when the resection is total.2-4 Preservation of the lower cranial nerve function is central to the management of head and neck PGLs, given the gravity of bilateral injuries.3 Irradiation therapy should be considered if the risk for bilateral lower cranial nerve injuries is high.5 Surgically, intrabulbar resection with preservation of the medial wall of the jugular bulb protects the lower cranial nerve function.3 Other technical finesses, including maintaining the facial nerve in its bony fallopian canal (facial bridge), avoiding carotid artery sacrifice, preservation of the ear canal, and preoperative embolization, contributed markedly to outcome improvement.2,3 We report a case of a 34-yr-old male with PGL 3 with a left glomus jugulare tumor that recurred and a right carotid body tumor. Patient consented to surgery and photography.  Image at 3:44 republished from Al-Mefty and Teixeira,3 with permission from JSNPG.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab268DOI Listing
July 2021

Transcondylar Odontoid Resection and Stabilization for Craniovertebral Degenerative Compression: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jul 22. Epub 2021 Jul 22.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Non-neoplastic craniovertebral junction lesions are well known with various etiologies.1,2 They are frequently associated with craniovertebral junction instability. Many require only stabilization for their management.2 However, when significant irreducible anterior compression is present, surgical decompression becomes necessary.2-4 The traditional decompression route is direct anterior, such as the transoral, transmaxillary, or endoscopic endonasal approaches with a separate posterior stabilization.1,2 The transcondylar approach offers a wide and direct exposure to the anterolateral foramen magnum and atlantoaxial space, allowing extensive decompression, total resection of the odontoid, and associated pannus, even with large lateral extension, as well as fusion in the same surgical setting.5 The surgical manipulation is parallel to the dural sac in the sagittal plane, which could be safer than perpendicular dissection.5 Understanding the regional anatomy allows safe exposure and transposition of the vertebral artery with the surrounding alveolar and venous plexus (suboccipital cavernous sinus).5-7 We present this technique's details in a case of a 72-yr-old female who presented with progressively worsening bilateral upper extremity weakness and significant anterior compression due to irreducible odontoid degenerative changes. We demonstrate the steps necessary to achieve adequate exposure and decompression. The patient agreed to the surgical intervention. Images at 2:46, 3:00, and 3:25 reused from Al-Mefty et al,5 by permission from JNSPG. Images at 9:28 from Symonds et al,3 by permission of Oxford University Press. Image at 2:15, © Ossama Al-Mefty, used with permission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab269DOI Listing
July 2021

Interposition Grafting of the Facial Nerve After Resection of a Large Facial Nerve Schwannoma: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jul 7. Epub 2021 Jul 7.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Facial nerve schwannomas can develop at any portion of the facial nerve.1 When arising from the mastoid portion of the facial nerve, the tumor will progressively erode the mastoid, giving the schwannoma an aggressive radiological appearance.1,2 The facial nerve is frequently already paralyzed, or no fascicles can be saved during resection. In these cases, end-to-end interposition grafting is the best option for facial reanimation.1,3-5 The healthy proximal and distal facial nerves are prepared prior to grafting. The great auricular nerve is readily available near the surgical site and represents an excellent graft donor with minimal associated morbidity.4,6 We demonstrate this technique through a case of a 48-yr-old male who presented with a complete right-sided facial nerve palsy due to a large facial schwannoma that invaded the mastoid and extended to the hypoglossal canal, causing hypoglossal nerve paralysis, and petrous carotid canal. His 4-yr follow-up showed no recurrent tumor with restored facial nerve function palsy to a House-Brackman grade III, and full recovery of his hypoglossal nerve function. The patient consented to the surgery and the publication of his image.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab240DOI Listing
July 2021

Nuances of Olfactory Groove Meningioma Surgery: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jun 30. Epub 2021 Jun 30.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Olfactory groove meningiomas frequently present as large or giant-size tumors associated with marked frontal lobe edema and significant frontal lobe dysfunction. Simpson grade I removal was rare in early reports due to their invasion of the ethmoid sinuses and skull base bone,1 which resulted in high recurrence rates.2,3 Indeed, recurrence occurred in the most celebrated case of olfactory groove meningioma.4,5  To achieve Simpson grade I removal (tumor, dura, bone), protect the frontal lobes from additional injury, and provide the best chance for recovery, we demonstrate a few nuances for olfactory groove meningioma surgery: Utilizing a skull base approach with a low dural opening, the frontal veins are preserved, and the frontal lobe is protected from retraction, manipulation, and venous injury. By the time of diagnosis, although the patient's olfaction is often absent, there still remains a role to preserve at least 1 olfactory tract, which might yield some preservation in a limited number of patients. Emphasis has been rightly made on the preservation of the A2 segments, which can be dissected using microsurgical technique. Lastly, multilayer reconstruction of the skull base is required, using an inlay graft, resting on a vascularized pericranial flap, and occlusion of the sinuses with a fat graft. The endonasal endoscopic approach has fallen out of favor due to limitations for complete tumor resection and higher complication rates.6  We present a case of a relatively small olfactory groove meningioma in a 36-yr-old male with partial olfactory loss. The patient consented for surgery.  Images at 2:07, 2:29, and 2:54 from Al-Mefty O, Operative Atlas of Meningiomas, © LWW, 1997, with permission. Image at 8:31 public domain by age.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab233DOI Listing
June 2021

Diaphragm Sellae Meningioma: Distinct Clinical, Anatomic, and Surgical Considerations: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jun 25. Epub 2021 Jun 25.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Nestled in the parasellar region, surrounded by critical neurovascular structures, diaphragm sellae meningiomas although rare present distinct clinical, radiological, and surgical considerations.1-3 Consequently, they present surgical challenges that could be overcome with technical nuances. The origin of this meningioma on the diaphragm creates a distorted anatomy, which must be comprehended for the safe approach and resection.  Three distinct subtypes of diaphragm sellae meningiomas are described, each with distinctive clinical presentations and surgical treatment implications.2 Type A originates from the upper leaf of diaphragm sellae pushing the stalk posteriorly. It usually presents with unilateral visual loss. Type B originates from the upper leaf of the diaphragm sellae pushing the stalk anteriorly. It presents with few visual symptoms, but memory disturbance and hypopituitarism are common. Type C originates from the inferior leaf of the diaphragm sellae (intrasellar meningioma) presenting with bitemporal hemianopsia and hypopituitarism. Recognizing these variations in this rare tumor subtype is critical to minimizing potential adverse outcomes associated with operative treatment. The cranial approach has been the recommended route for these lesions with an exception of the intrasellar type.1,3  In this article, we depict the pathological anatomy and demonstrate the surgical nuances in handling diaphragm sellae meningioma resection through a cranio-orbital approach4 in a patient who had an unsuccessful trans-sphenoidal resection attempt. The patient consented for the procedure.  Image at 1:38 from Al-Mefty O, Operative Atlas of Meningiomas, © LWW, 1997, with permission. Image at 8:56 from Kinjo et al,2 Diaphragma sellae meningiomas, case reports, Neurosurgery, 1995, 36(6), 1082-1092, by permission of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab234DOI Listing
June 2021

"Save the Nerve": Technical Nuances for Hearing Preservation and Restoration in Vestibular Schwannoma Surgery: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jun 25. Epub 2021 Jun 25.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Hearing loss is a significant disability that inflects dysfunction and affects the patient quality of life. Consequently, hearing preservation and the potential of hearing restoration are prized quests in the management of vestibular schwannoma.1 Although small intracanalicular vestibular schwannomas are commonly observed, progressive hearing loss occurs despite the absence of tumor growth; hence, surgical resection can be performed with the sole aim of hearing preservation in well-informed and eager patients. Hearing preservation by surgical resection has proven to be durable.1-4 In this group of patients, we concur with Yamakami et al2 that vascularized meatal flap to reconstruct the canal helps prevent scarring of the cochlear nerve and provides cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) bathing to the cochlear nerve, yielding better long-term hearing preservation.  With larger tumors and more severe hearing loss at presentation, microsurgical resection should aim at preserving the cochlear nerve, a goal frequently achievable, which offers the potential for hearing restoration with cochlear implants.3 The results of cochlear implants in restoration of severe hearing loss have been to say the least most impressive.5 We demonstrate these 2 frequently encountered clinical situations with 2 surgical videos showing specific surgical tenets, including intra-arachnoidal dissection, medial to lateral manipulation of the tumor, preservation of the labyrinthine artery, as well as reconstruction of the internal auditory canal.2,3,6,7 The patients consented to the surgery and to the publication of their picture in a surgical video.  Illustration in video © 1997 O. Al-Mefty. Used with permission. All rights reserved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab230DOI Listing
June 2021

Resection of Giant Invasive Parasagittal Atypical Meningioma With a Venous Graft Reconstruction of the Sagittal Sinus: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jun 25. Epub 2021 Jun 25.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Parasagittal meningioma becomes challenging when it involves the sagittal sinus and frequently invades the skull1; hence, resection of the invasive bone and management of the involved sinus are the two crucial issues in these tumors; notwithstanding the practice of conservative surgical resection coupled with irradiation (radiosurgery or stereotactic radiotherapy),2 radical surgical removal, including the invaded bone and sinus (Simpson grade I), alleviates recurrences. It is more valuable and particularly recommended in grade II meningiomas,3 since radical surgery is the principal factor in a long control of grade II meningioma4 and radiation effectiveness is directly related to gross total removal.5 On the other hand, removal of tumor involving the sinus and sinus reconstruction has been recommended and practiced for years.6-10 When the sinus is occluded, preservation of the collateral venous drainage becomes paramount.11 If the collateral venous drainage included cutaneous and dural channels, as in this patient, reconstructing of the sinus would become preventative of a major venous complication. Sindou et al8 even advocate the routine reconstruction of occluded sinus to minimize morbidity.  The patient is 39 yr old with a giant parasagittal meningioma that invaded the skull, occluded the sinus at the mid-third, and had venous collateral through the dura and cutaneous veins. He underwent radical resection with reconstruction of the sinus by saphenous vein graft. Patient consented for the operation and publication of images.  Illustrations at 1:51 and 2:15 from Al-Mefty O, Operative Atlas of Meningiomas, © LWW, 1997, with permission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab232DOI Listing
June 2021

Extirpation of Recurrent Petrous Apex Cholesterol Granuloma Through the Zygomatic Approach: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jun 10. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Petrous apex cholesterol granulomas are believed to result from blockage of the normal aeration of the petrous air cells, resulting in a repetitive cycle of mucosal engorgement, hemorrhage, and granuloma formation.1 The lesion usually progressively expands causing compressive symptoms. The thick granulomatous wall envelopes various ages of breakdown products, including a cholesterol-containing fluid, which is typically hyperintense on T1 and T2 weighted magnetic resonance imaging. Drainage procedures, regardless of the route (endoscopic, endonasal, or transtemporal), with or without stenting or marsupialization, will only temporarily drain this cholesterol-containing fluid, with consequently frequent recurrences.2-5 A total exoneration of the granuloma and obliteration of the cavity with vascularized tissue will assure a more durable outcome.1 The extradural zygomatic/middle fossa approach provides a short distance to the petrous apex and is purely extradural. By sectioning the zygoma, temporal lobe retraction is avoided.6 We present a case of a 29-yr-old male who presented in the year 2000 with progression of a left petrous apex cholesterol granuloma despite 2 previous drainage and stenting procedures.  The patient consented for surgery and photo publication. Images in video at 2:41 © JNSPG, republished from Eisenberg et al1 with permission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab156DOI Listing
June 2021

Simpson Grade I Removal of Tuberculum Sella Meningioma Through the Supraorbital Approach: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 07;21(2):E103-E104

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

As described by Cushing1 in the chiasmatic syndrome, tuberculum sellae meningiomas induce progressive asymmetrical, incongruous visual loss, which would lead to blindness. The surgical removal of these lesions has been rewarding in regard to visual preservation, or recovery, and has passed the test of time. Optic canal extension, in one or both canals, is a consistent feature of these tumors, and removing the tumor from the optic canals is paramount in the treatment of these lesions.2 Despite the small target volume, radiosurgery is not applicable because of the lack of safe distance from the optic pathways. Tuberculum sella meningioma has been distinguished with good surgical outcomes and low recurrence rates; thus, Simpson grade I removal (tumor, dura, and bone invasion) confers a prospect of cure.  Safe and successful resection of tuberculum meningiomas is achieved through the skull base supraorbital approach3 with several critical objectives: (1) visualization of the tumor without brain retraction; (2) 270° opening of the optic canal proximally and distally for safe tumor removal; (3) preservation of the vascular supply to the optic pathways and pituitary; (4) microsurgical dissection under high magnification on a short working distance to the encased carotid and anterior cerebral arteries; (5) complete resection of involved dura and bone at the skull base, particularly laterally; and (6) a robust skull base reconstruction with a vascularized pericranial flap.4  We present the case of a 45-yr-old female with a tuberculum sella meningioma who underwent Simpson grade I removal with an uneventful outcome. The patient consented for surgery.  Image at 2:59 reprinted with permission from Al-Mefty O, Operative Atlas of Meningiomas. Vol 1, © LWW, 1998; Image at 9:33 public domain.4.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab133DOI Listing
July 2021

Transcavernous Resection of an Upper Clival Chondrosarcoma: "Cavernous Sinus as a Route": 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 05;20(6):E422-E423

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Complete resection of skull base chondrosarcomas offers the potential for a durable, or even lifelong, cure and is best achieved at the first surgery.1,2 When a skull base chondrosarcoma is located at the upper clivus and in the interpeduncular cistern and invading laterally toward the petrous apex and cavernous sinus, the traditional approaches, ie, endonasal endoscopic or middle fossa approaches, are not adequate for the exposure and resection. The transcavernous sinus approach has been utilized to remove tumor from the cavernous sinus and as a corridor to the interpeduncular cistern and upper clivus, originally described for the clipping of basilar apex aneurysms. We present a case of a chondrosarcoma centered in the upper clivus and eroding the right posterior clinoid, analogous to the location of a giant basilar apex aneurysm. Detailed study of the tumor extension, bony invasion, and relationship with neuroanatomy dictated the most effective surgical approach.3,4 Neuronavigation and intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) facilitated the gross total resection of the tumor in the Advanced Multimodality Image-Guided Operating (AMIGO) suite. Achieving a gross total tumor removal of this World Health Organization (WHO) grade I chondrosarcoma, adjuvant irradiation can be withheld1 and the patient monitored with serial imaging. The patient did well after the surgery. The patient consented for surgery and the use of photography.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab043DOI Listing
May 2021

Integration of Microanatomy, Neuronavigation, Dynamic Neurophysiologic Monitoring, and Intraoperative Multimodality Imaging for the Safe Removal of an Insular Glioma: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 06;21(1):E28-E29

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.

Insular gliomas are located amongst myriad critical neurovascular structures, including lenticulostriate vessels, long insular perforators, putamen, internal capsule, frontal and temporal opercula, and key fasciculi.1-6 Each of these critical structures engenders key function of the brain, which must be preserved. Although anatomic knowledge remains the cornerstone of insular glioma surgery, novel tools have been developed to aid the surgeon in identifying and preserving these essential structures. Modern surgery of the insular glioma calls for seamless integration of these techniques to maximize the safety and totality of insular glioma resection, which has been shown to improve length of survival and seizure control, while reducing risk of tumor transformation.7-10 Neuronavigation can be used to help plan the craniotomy to achieve adequate exposure and assist during tumor resection. Brain "shift" can be corrected by re-registration following intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Interval ultrasound imaging reflects real-time progressive tumor resection. Dynamic neurophysiologic monitoring using thresholding techniques guides the surgeon as he resects tumor at its depth and posterior pole-close to the internal capsule. Intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging depicts residual infiltrative tumor that may require additional resection. The patient is a 33-yr-old woman with progressive growth of a right insular tumor and has consented to surgery, photography, and video recording.  Figure at 1:57, © Ossama Al-Mefty, used with permission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab050DOI Listing
June 2021

Concomitant Embolization and Microsurgical Resection of a Giant, Hypervascular Skull Base Meningioma: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 07;21(2):E97-E98

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Some skull base tumors can be extremely hypervascular, incorporating multiple vascular territories and demonstrating arteriovenous shunting. Devascularization is a critical step undertaken early in meningioma surgery, necessary before the debulking that is required in skull base tumors. While devascularization can often be achieved with appropriate approach selection, bony drilling, and microsurgical cautery, preoperative embolization of meningiomas has an invaluable role in selected cases.1,2  Embolization, however, does have added risk, magnified in large tumors by the potential infarction with subsequent edema that can potentially lead to acute deterioration and neurosurgical emergency. Hence, to achieve devascularization of an extremely vascular tumor, embolization and surgical resection should be performed concomitantly, as one operation, in which embolization might be the first stage, or might be performed after the craniotomy flap is raised, if necessary.3 Naturally, this requires the multifaceted neurosurgical expertise of embolization and microsurgical resection, and the facility to perform such.  We present a case of a giant, hypervascular, radiation-induced, skull base meningioma with internal and external carotid artery supply in a young patient with deteriorating vision in his only eye. Selective embolization of the internal maxillary, middle meningeal, and middle cerebral artery blood supplies was performed. Microsurgical interruption of the ethmoidal artery blood supply was then performed. This hybrid approach safely and effectively devascularized the tumor and allowed for a complete resection of this high-risk tumor4 while minimizing risk to the ophthalmic artery and optic nerve.  The patient was consented for surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab128DOI Listing
July 2021

Medial Acoustic Tumors: Special Considerations: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 07;21(2):E101-E102

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Medial acoustic tumors are a rare distinct type of vestibular schwannoma having distinguished clinical and radiological features.1 Originating medially in the cerebellopontine angle without extending into the lateral internal auditory meatus, they are frequently giant in size at presentation in younger patients with a relatively preserved hearing, while they have other neurological deficits from cerebellar or brainstem compression and associated hydrocephalus. Imaging typically shows a cystic tumor with local mass effect and an internal auditory canal filled with cerebrospinal fluid.1,2 Surgical resection of theses schwannoma is particularly challenging not only due to their size and hypervascularity, but also given their particular arachnoidal rearrangement inducing marked adherence to the brainstem and facial nerve.2  The treatment is surgical resection, despite, however, their giant size hearing preservation should be sought and is attainable.1-5 Transmastoid approach with squeletonization and reflection of the transverse sigmoid sinus provides lateral exposure avoiding cerebellar retraction.6 In this report, we demonstrate the specific surgical considerations applied to the resection of a giant medial acoustic tumor in a 40-yr-old patient presenting with ataxia, vertigo, facial paresthesia, and intact hearing. The patient agreed to the surgery and photography.  Image at 1:44 © Ossama Al-Mefty, used with permission; Image at 8:21 from Dunn et al,2 used with permission from JNSPG.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab129DOI Listing
July 2021

Radical Resection of a Giant Epidermoid Tumor Associated With Miniature Chordoma Utilizing a Combined Endoscopic-Microscopic Technique: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 07;21(2):E95-E96

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Epidermoid tumors arise from misplaced squamous epithelium and enlarge through the accumulation of desquamated cell debris.1 Notwithstanding the prevailing conservative attitudes to minimize morbidity, optimal treatment consists of total removal of the capsule2,3; therefore, giant and multicompartmental tumors are particularly challenging. The utilization of simultaneous endoscopic microscopic techniques by tandem endoscopic and microscopic dissection to overcome the shortcomings of both modalities, markedly enhances the ability of radical removal,4 thus eliminating or at least long-delaying inevitable recurrences with subsequent accumulated morbidity. The transmastoid approach by skeletonizing and reflexing the transverse-sigmoid sinus offers wide exposure of the cerebellopontine angle avoiding cerebellar retraction and allowing 4-hands dissection.5 The patient is a 17-yr-old male with a giant epidermoid tumor in the cerebellopontine angle, extending through the incisura. The patient underwent surgical resection with maximum pursuit of the epithelial capsule. After removing the epidermoid tumor, a miniature intra and extradural midclival tumor was encountered and removed with a proven pathology of chordoma. Patient did well postoperatively with relief of his hemifacial spasms. Patient consented for surgery and photograph publication. Image at 1:23, ©1997, O. Al-Mefty, used with permission. All rights reserved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab130DOI Listing
July 2021

A Combined Microsurgical and Endovascular Approach to Giant Paraclinoid Aneurysm: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 05;20(6):E424-E425

Neurosciences Center, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Giant paraclinoid aneurysm remains a treatment challenge because of their complex anatomy and surgical difficulties stems frequently from a calcified or atherosclerotic aneurysmal neck and compression of the optic pathways.1-9 To improve exposure, facilitate the dissection of the aneurysm, assure vascular control, reduce brain retraction and temporary occlusion time, and enable simultaneous treatment of possible associated aneurysms, we combined the cranio-orbital zygomatic (COZ) approach9 with endovascular balloon occlusion of the internal carotid artery (ICA) and suction decompression of the aneurysm.4 The patient is a 50-yr-old female who presented with headache and hemianopsia. MRI, CT, and 4-vessel angiography revealed a giant right ophthalmic paraclinoid partially thrombosed aneurysm. Surgery was performed via right COZ approach with removal of the anterior clinoid. Unroofing the optic canal and opening the falciform ligament and the optic sheath, allowing the dissection and mobilization of the optic nerve from the aneurysm and the origin of ophthalmic artery. The endovascular team placed a deflated, double lumen balloon catheter in the ICA 2 cm above the common carotid bifurcation. Proximal control is achieved by inflating the balloon. Distal control is then gained by temporary clipping just proximal of the origin of PcomA.4 Retrograde suction decompression through the catheter partially collapses and softens the aneurysm.1,4,6-8 Carotid occlusion was applied twice, 2:47 and 2:57 min. Intraoperative angiogram revealed the obliteration of the aneurysm and the patency of the carotid and ophthalmic artery. The patient recovered well, and visual deficit resolved and was neurologically intact. Patient consented for surgery. Illustrations in video reprinted with minimal modification from Surgical Neurology, vol 50, issue 6, Arnautović KI, Al-Mefty O, Angtuaco E, A combined microsurgical skull-base and endovascular approach to giant and large paraclinoid aneuroysms, 504-518,4 Copyright 1998, with permission from Elsevier Science Inc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab059DOI Listing
May 2021

Recurrent Chordoma Resection in the Advanced Multimodality Image Guided Operating Suite: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Apr;20(5):E344-E345

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

Recurrent skull base chordomas are challenging lesions. They already had maximum radiation, and in the absence of any effective medical treatment, surgical resection is the only treatment.1,2 Surgery on recurrent previously radiated chordomas, however, carries much higher risk and the likelihood of subtotal resection. Maximizing tumor resection allows longer tumor control.3-5 The Advanced Multimodality Image Guided Operating Suite developed at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, with the support of the National Institutes of Health, provides an optimal environment to manage these tumors. It offers the capability to obtain and integrate multiple modalities during surgery, including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET-CT), endoscopy, ultrasound, fluoroscopy, and the ability to perform emergent endovascular procedures.5-7 The patient is a 39-yr-old male, presenting after 19 yr follow-up of a surgical resection and proton beam treatment for a skull base chordoma. He developed progressive ophthalmoplegia due to recurrence of his chordoma at the right petrous apex and cavernous sinus. Preoperative angiography demonstrated narrowing of the petrous segment of the right carotid artery suspect of radiation-induced angiopathy. The presence of radiation-induced angiopathy increases the risk of intraoperative carotid rupture, and the availability of endovascular intervention in the operative suite added favorable preparedness to deal with such complications if they happen. Given the clinical and radiological progression, surgical intervention was carried out through the prior zygomatic approach with the goal of performing maximum resection.8 The patient had an uneventful postoperative course and remained stable until he had a second recurrence 4 yr later. The patient consented to the procedure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opaa445DOI Listing
April 2021

The Resection of a Thalamic Pilocytic Astrocytoma Through the Transchoroidal Fissure, Transcallosal Approach: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Apr;20(5):E346-E347

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Surgical resection is the primary treatment of pilocytic astrocytomas and total removal can be curative. However, these lesions occur in critical areas, such as the thalamus, being surrounded by critical life neurovascular structures, which imposes a surgical challenge.1-5 Exhaustive acquisition and meticulous interpretation of preoperative radiological exams; reliable surgical orientation based on profound microneurosurgical anatomic knowledge and judicious discernment of the neuroanatomic distortions on the surface and deep-seated structures inflicted by the neuropathological entity; embracing and comprehensive application of the vast scope of available intraoperative guidance imaging and neurophysiological monitoring; in alliance with the mastered carefully microsurgical technique supported by endoscopic visualization are the keystones to the pursed duet "cure with quality of life" in the treatment of these lesions. We present the case of a 17-yr-old young lady with a progressive motor deficit in her right hemibody for over 2 yr. Her radiological investigation demonstrated a left thalamic lesion displacing the projection fibers (corticospinal tract) within the internal capsule laterally. The patient consented to the surgical procedure. The surgical strategy, intraoperative findings, and microsurgical and endoscopic technique, as well as the postoperative radiological and clinical evaluation are presented. The patient gave her informed consent for the publication of the case.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab015DOI Listing
April 2021

Two-Stage Double Petrosal Approach for the Total Resection of Petroclival-Cavernous Meningioma: 2-Dimensional Operative Video.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 06;21(1):E30-E31

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

The utilization of skull base approaches has markedly facilitated the safe surgical removal of challenging petroclival meningiomas.1 The anterior petrosal approach has been utilized for tumors limited to the upper clivus, above the meatus, whereas the posterior petrosal approach has been the workhorse for the resection of larger tumors in the posterior fossa extending down the clivus.2 Giant cases with extension in the middle fossa, cavernous sinus, and ventral to the brain stem would benefit from a wider exposure than each of these approaches provide. This could be achieved by total petrosectomy. However, in patients with serviceable hearing anterior and posterior petrosals can be combined while preserving the hearing apparatus.2,3 This procedure is lengthy; hence, we tend to stage it in 2 subsequent days. The first stage is focused on the soft tissue and bone work including the mastoidectomy, sigmoid transverse sinus, and jugular bulb skeletonization, as well as anterior petrosectomy. The second stage is dedicated to tumor exposure through tentorial sectioning and microsurgical resection. We report the case of a 40-yr-old woman diagnosed with large left-sided petroclival meningioma with significant extension into the cavernous sinus and Meckel's cave. The patient had neurological deficits including cranial nerves, cerebellar dysfunction, and hydrocephalus, although her hearing was intact. Total tumor resection was achieved through the double petrosal approach in 2002. Extensive anatomic knowledge and thorough preoperative clinical and radiological evaluation, particularly the venous system, are key in the successful planning of this procedure. The patient consented for surgery and publication of their image.  Figures at 2:40 and 3:47, ©Ossama Al-Mefty, used with permission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opab049DOI Listing
June 2021

Corpus Callosotomy for Refractory Epilepsy in Aicardi Syndrome: Case Report and Focused Review of the Literature.

World Neurosurg 2020 10 9;142:450-455. Epub 2020 Jul 9.

Department of Neurosurgery, Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Background: Aicardi syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder that occurs primarily in females and is characterized by seizures, agenesis of the corpus callosum, and chorioretinal lacunae, which occur together in the majority of affected individuals. Seizures begin in infancy and tend to progress in intensity and are often refractory to standard multimodal medication treatments.

Case Description: We present here a unique case of a 12-year-old girl with partial agenesis of the corpus callosum who underwent a corpus callosotomy for treatment of medically refractory epilepsy. In so doing, we also review the literature with regard to the neurosurgical management of these unique patients.

Conclusions: For the subset of children who present with partial, rather than complete, agenesis of the corpus callosum, corpus callosotomy should be considered as a treatment option to reduce seizure burden.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2020.06.230DOI Listing
October 2020

The Path to U.S. Neurosurgical Residency for Foreign Medical Graduates: Trends from a Decade 2007-2017.

World Neurosurg 2020 05 19;137:e584-e596. Epub 2020 Feb 19.

Department of Neurological Surgery, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA. Electronic address:

Objective: The increasing competitiveness of the neurosurgical residency match has made it progressively difficult for foreign medical graduates (FMGs) to match in neurosurgery. We compared FMG to U.S. medical graduate (USMG) match rates in neurosurgery and identified factors associated with match outcomes for FMGs in neurosurgery.

Methods: Retrospective review of American Association of Neurological Surgeons membership data and Association of American Medical Colleges Charting the Outcomes match reports (2007-2017).

Results: Across 1857 neurosurgical residents (USMG: 91.1%, FMG: 8.9%), average FMG match rates were 24% (range, 15%-35%) versus 83% (range, 75%-94%; P < 0.001) for USMG. FMGs were more male (89.5% vs. 82.0%, P = 0.016), older (33.9 vs. 31.8 years, P = 0.008), and more likely to take research year(s) before matching (95.8% vs. 78.5%, P < 0.001). FMGs had greater publications (5 vs. 2, P < 0.001) and H-indices (3 vs. 1, P < 0.001). The number of matched USMGs increased by 3.3 annually, whereas that of matched FMGs remained unchanged (β = 0.07). Compared with USMGs, FMGs were less likely to match to National Institutes of Health (NIH) Top 40 (32.7% vs. 47.5%, P < 0.001) and Doximity Top 20 (20.0% vs. 29.0%, P = 0.014) programs. FMGs with prior U.S. neurosurgery program affiliation were more likely to match at NIH and Doximity Top 20 programs (P < 0.05). For NIH programs, FMGs were older (35.3 vs. 32.0, P = 0.011), had higher H-indices (5 vs. 2, P < 0.001), publications (7 vs. 2, P < 0.001), and were more likely to take research year(s) (94.4% vs. 76.0%, P = 0.002) than USMGs. FMGs had similar patterns for matching into Doximity Top 20 programs.

Conclusions: Although FMGs have lower match rates into U.S. neurosurgery residencies than USMGs, several demographic, professional, and academic factors could increase the chances of successful FMG neurosurgical match.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2020.02.069DOI Listing
May 2020

Clinical Utility of Preoperative Bilingual Language fMRI Mapping in Patients with Brain Tumors.

J Neuroimaging 2020 03 10;30(2):175-183. Epub 2020 Feb 10.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Background And Purpose: Previous literature has demonstrated disparity in the postoperative recovery of first and second language function of bilingual neurosurgical patients. However, it is unclear to whether preoperative brain mapping of both languages is needed. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the clinical utility of language task functional MRI (fMRI) implemented in both languages in bilingual patients.

Methods: We retrospectively examined fMRI data of 13 bilingual brain tumor patients (age: 23 to 59 years) who performed antonym generation task-based fMRIs in English and non-English language. The usefulness of bilingual language mapping was evaluated using a structured survey administered to 5 neurosurgeons. Additionally, quantitative comparison between the brain activation maps of both languages was performed.

Results: Survey responses revealed differences in raters' surgical approach, including asleep versus awake surgery and extent of resection, after viewing the language fMRI maps. Additional non-English fMRI led to changes in surgical decision-making and bettered localization of language areas. Quantitative analysis revealed an increase in laterality index (LI) in non-English fMRI compared to English fMRI. The Dice coefficient demonstrated fair overlap (.458 ± .160) between the activation maps.

Conclusion: Bilingual fMRI mapping of bilingual patients allows to better appreciate functionally active language areas that may be neglected in single language mapping. Utility of bilingual mapping was supported by changes in both surgical approach and LI measurements, suggesting its benefit on preoperative language mapping.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jon.12690DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7115038PMC
March 2020

Intraoperative Use of Functional MRI for Surgical Decision Making after Limited or Infeasible Electrocortical Stimulation Mapping.

J Neuroimaging 2020 03 22;30(2):184-191. Epub 2019 Dec 22.

Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Background And Purpose: Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is becoming widely recognized as a key component of preoperative neurosurgical planning, although intraoperative electrocortical stimulation (ECS) is considered the gold standard surgical brain mapping method. However, acquiring and interpreting ECS results can sometimes be challenging. This retrospective study assesses whether intraoperative availability of fMRI impacted surgical decision-making when ECS was problematic or unobtainable.

Methods: Records were reviewed for 191 patients who underwent presurgical fMRI with fMRI loaded into the neuronavigation system. Four patients were excluded as a bur-hole biopsy was performed. Imaging was acquired at 3 Tesla and analyzed using the general linear model with significantly activated pixels determined via individually determined thresholds. fMRI maps were displayed intraoperatively via commercial neuronavigation systems.

Results: Seventy-one cases were planned ECS; however, 18 (25.35%) of these procedures were either not attempted or aborted/limited due to: seizure (10), patient difficulty cooperating with the ECS mapping (4), scarring/limited dural opening (3), or dural bleeding (1). In all aborted/limited ECS cases, the surgeon continued surgery using fMRI to guide surgical decision-making. There was no significant difference in the incidence of postoperative deficits between cases with completed ECS and those with limited/aborted ECS.

Conclusions: Preoperative fMRI allowed for continuation of surgery in over one-fourth of patients in which planned ECS was incomplete or impossible, without a significantly different incidence of postoperative deficits compared to the patients with completed ECS. This demonstrates additional value of fMRI beyond presurgical planning, as fMRI data served as a backup method to ECS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jon.12683DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7252738PMC
March 2020

Intraoperative Doppler ultrasound as a means of preventing vertebral artery injury during Goel and Harms C1-C2 posterior arthrodesis: technical note.

J Neurosurg Spine 2019 Aug 16:1-7. Epub 2019 Aug 16.

2Neurosurgery Division, University Hospital S. Anna, Cona di Ferrara, Italy; and.

Vertebral artery injury (VAI) is a potential catastrophic complication of Goel and Harms C1-C2 posterior arthrodesis. Meticulous study of preoperative spinal CT angiography together with neuronavigation plays a fundamental role in avoiding VAI. Doppler ultrasonography may be an additional intraoperative tool, providing real-time identification of the vertebral artery (VA) and thus helping its preservation.Thirty-three consecutive patients with unstable odontoid fractures underwent Goel and Harms C1-C2 posterior arthrodesis. Surgery was performed with the aid of lateral fluoroscopic control in 16 cases (control group) that was supplemented by Doppler ultrasonography in 17 cases (Doppler group). Two patients in each group had a C1 ponticulus posticus. In the Doppler group, Doppler probing was performed during lateral subperiosteal muscle dissection, stepwise drilling, and tapping. Blood flow velocity in the V3 segment of the VA was recorded before and after posterior arthrodesis. All patients had a 12-month outpatient follow-up, and outcome was assessed using the Smiley-Webster Pain Scale. Neither VAI nor postoperative neurological impairments were observed in the Doppler group. In the control group, VAIs occurred in the 2 patients with C1 ponticulus posticus. In the Doppler group, 1 patient needed intra- and postoperative blood transfusions, and no difference in terms of Doppler signal or VA blood flow velocity was detected before and after C1-C2 posterior arthrodesis. In the control group, 3 patients needed intra- and postoperative blood transfusions.Useful in supporting fluoroscopy-assisted procedures, intraoperative Doppler may play a significant role even during surgeries in which neuronavigation is used, reducing the chance of a mismatch between the view on the neuronavigation screen and the actual course of the VA in the operative field and supplying the additional data of blood flow velocity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2019.5.SPINE1959DOI Listing
August 2019

Type II odontoid fracture in elderly patients treated conservatively: is fracture healing the goal?

Eur Spine J 2019 05 23;28(5):1064-1071. Epub 2019 Jan 23.

Neurosurgery Division, University Hospital S.Anna, Viale Aldo Moro 8, 44121, Cona di Ferrara, Italy.

Purpose: Analysis of functional outcome of elderly patients with type II odontoid fractures treated conservatively in relation to their radiological outcome.

Methods: A total of 50 geriatric patients with type II odontoid fractures were treated with Aspen/Vista collars. On admission, each patient was assessed assigning ASA score, modified Rankin Scale (mRS-pre) and Charlson Comorbidity Index (CCI). From 12-15 months after treatment, functional evaluations were performed employing a second modified Rankin Scale (mRS-post) together with Neck Disability Index (NDI) and Smiley-Webster pain scale (SWPS). Radiological outcome was evaluated through dynamic cervical spine X-rays at 3 months and cervical spine CT scans 6 months after treatment. Three different conditions were identified: stable union, stable non-union and unstable non-union. Surgery was preferred whenever a fracture gap > 2 mm, an antero-posterior displacement > 5 mm, an odontoid angulation > 11° or neurological deficits occurred.

Results: Among the 50 patients, 24 reached a stable union, while 26 a stable non-union. Comparing the two groups, no differences in ASA (p = 0.60), CCI (p = 0.85) and mRS-pre (p = 0.14) were noted. Similarly, no differences in mRS-post (p = 0.96), SWPS (p = 0.85) and NDI (p = 0.51) were observed between patients who reached an osseous fusion and those with a stable fibrous non-union. No effects of age, sex, ASA, mRS-pre, fracture dislocation and radiological outcome were discovered on functional outcome. At logistic regression analysis, female sex and high values of CCI emerged associated with worse NDI.

Conclusions: In geriatric type II odontoid fractures, pre-injury clinical status and comorbidities overcome imaging in determining post-treatment level of function. Hard collar immobilization led to a favourable functional outcome with mRS-post, NDI and SWPS values diffusely encouraging whatever a bony union or a fibrous non-union was obtained. These slides can be retrieved under Electronic Supplementary Material.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00586-019-05898-2DOI Listing
May 2019

SlicerDMRI: Open Source Diffusion MRI Software for Brain Cancer Research.

Cancer Res 2017 11;77(21):e101-e103

Brigham & Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

Diffusion MRI (dMRI) is the only noninvasive method for mapping white matter connections in the brain. We describe SlicerDMRI, a software suite that enables visualization and analysis of dMRI for neuroscientific studies and patient-specific anatomic assessment. SlicerDMRI has been successfully applied in multiple studies of the human brain in health and disease, and here, we especially focus on its cancer research applications. As an extension module of the 3D Slicer medical image computing platform, the SlicerDMRI suite enables dMRI analysis in a clinically relevant multimodal imaging workflow. Core SlicerDMRI functionality includes diffusion tensor estimation, white matter tractography with single and multi-fiber models, and dMRI quantification. SlicerDMRI supports clinical DICOM and research file formats, is open-source and cross-platform, and can be installed as an extension to 3D Slicer (www.slicer.org). More information, videos, tutorials, and sample data are available at dmri.slicer.org .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-17-0332DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5679308PMC
November 2017
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