Penetrating head injury outcome

Penetrating head injury outcome

Surgical intervention in penetrating head injury patients with GCS 3-5 results in improved mortality but comes at a cost of increased resource utilization in the form of longer LOS and higher infection rate. On the other hand, in patients with GCS ≥6, surgery does not provide significant benefits in patient survival. Future prospective studies providing insight as to the impact of surgery on the resource utilization and quality of survival would be beneficial in determining the need for surgical intervention in this population 1).

Reports from civilian cohorts are small because of the high reported mortality rates (as high as 90%). Data from military populations suggest a better prognosis for penetrating brain injury, but previous reports are hampered by analyses that exclude the point of injury.

The purpose of a study was to provide a description of the long-term functional outcomes of those who sustain a combat-related penetrating brain injury (from the initial point of injury to 24 months afterward).

This study is a retrospective review of cases of penetrating brain injury in patients who presented to the Role 3 Multinational Medical Unit at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, from January 2010 to March 2013. The primary outcome of interest was Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) score at 6, 12, and 24 months from date of injury.

A total of 908 cases required neurosurgical consultation during the study period, and 80 of these cases involved US service members with penetrating brain injury. The mean admission Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score was 8.5 (SD 5.56), and the mean admission Injury Severity Score (ISS) was 26.6 (SD 10.2). The GOS score for the cohort trended toward improvement at each time point (3.6 at 6 months, 3.96 at 24 months, p > 0.05). In subgroup analysis, admission GCS score ≤ 5, gunshot wound as the injury mechanism, admission ISS ≥ 26, and brain herniation on admission CT head were all associated with worse GOS scores at all time points. Excluding those who died, functional improvement occurred regardless of admission GCS score (p < 0.05). The overall mortality rate for the cohort was 21%.

Good functional outcomes were achieved in this population of severe penetrating brain injury in those who survived their initial resuscitation. The mortality rate was lower than observed in civilian cohorts 2).

At the time of the Boer War in 1899 penetrating head injuries, which formed a large proportion of the battlefield casualties, resulted in almost 100% mortality. Since that time up to the present day, significant improvements in technique, equipment and organisation have reduced the mortality to about 10% 3).



D’Agostino R, Kursinskis A, Parikh P, Letarte P, Harmon L, Semon G. Management of Penetrating Traumatic Brain Injury: Operative versus Non-Operative Intervention [published online ahead of print, 2020 Aug 17]. J Surg Res. 2020;257:101-106. doi:10.1016/j.jss.2020.07.046

Two-year mortality and functional outcomes in combat-related penetrating brain injury: battlefield through rehabilitation. Neurosurg Focus. 2018 Dec 1;45(6):E4. doi: 10.3171/2018.9.FOCUS18359. PubMed PMID: 30544304.

Stanworth PA. A century of British military neurosurgery. J R Army Med Corps. 2015 Aug 4. pii: jramc-2015-000477. doi: 10.1136/jramc-2015-000477. [Epub ahead of print] Review. PubMed PMID: 26243803.

Skull base chondrosarcoma outcome

Skull base chondrosarcoma outcome

Chondrosarcomas are relatively slow growing but locally aggressive. Local resection is often the treatment of choice. Radiotherapy may sometimes be employed although sensitivity is thought to be minimal. Metastatic spread is uncommon.

High-dose, double-scattered 3D conformal proton therapy alone or following surgical resection for skull-base chondrosarcoma is an effective treatment with a high rate of local control with no acute grade 3 radiation-related toxicity 1).

In 2010 Bloch et al. published an extensive systematic review of the English literature. The patients were stratified according to treatment modality, treatment history, histological subtype, and histological grade, and the recurrence rates were analyzed. A total of 560 patients treated for cranial chondrosarcoma were included. Five-year recurrence rate among all patients was 22% with median follow-up of 60 months and median disease-free interval of 16 months. Tumor recurrence was more common in patients who only received surgery or had mesenchymal subtype tumors 2).

Pencil-beam scanning proton therapy is an effective treatment for skull base tumors with acceptable late toxicity. Optic apparatus and/or brainstem compression, histology and gross tumor volume (GTV) allow independent prediction of the risk of local failure and death in skull base tumor patients 3).

Dibas et al. aimed to evaluate the incidence and survival rates and trends of skull base chondrosarcomas (SBC).

Data from SBC patients between 1975 and 2017 were extracted from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database. The age-adjusted rates (AAR) were calculated for the overall cases and based on gender, age, race, and histology. Furthermore, the relative survival rates for one, three, and five years, and the rates stratified to the aforementioned selected variables were computed. Besides, they conducted a joint point regression analysis to calculate the annual percent change (APC) and its associated standard error (SE) for AAR and mortality.

The AAR rate of SBC was 0.019 per 100,000. Higher AAR rates were observed in patients who were in the 65-74-year-age-group, females, Caucasians, and had none mesenchymal subtype. The relative one-year, three-year and five-year-survival rates were 99.58 %, 93.67 %, and 89.10 %, respectively. Lower survival rates were noted in patients who were males, African Americans, and had a mesenchymal subtype. The trend analysis has shown a significant yearly increase (P < 0.001) in AAR of SBC (APC ± SE = 0.0005 %±0.0001), along with a significant yearly decline in mortality rates (APC ± SE= -0.0202 %±0.0029).

Despite the increase in AAR over time, there has been a significant decline in mortality rates over time, which might have been due to the advancement of treatment modalities, improvement in diagnostic imaging, and modification in disease grading 4).



Holtzman AL, Rotondo RL, Rutenberg MS, et al. Proton therapy for skull-base chondrosarcoma, a single-institution outcomes study. J Neurooncol. 2019;142(3):557-563. doi:10.1007/s11060-019-03129-8

Bloch OG, Jian BJ, Yang I, et al. Cranial chondrosarcoma and recurrence. Skull Base. 2010;20(3):149-156. doi:10.1055/s-0029-1246218

Weber DC, Malyapa R, Albertini F, et al. Long term outcomes of patients with skull-base low-grade chondrosarcoma and chordoma patients treated with pencil beam scanning proton therapy. Radiother Oncol. 2016;120(1):169-174. doi:10.1016/j.radonc.2016.05.011

Dibas M, Doheim MF, Ghozy S, Ros MH, El-Helw GO, Reda A. Incidence and survival rates and trends of skull Base chondrosarcoma: A Population-Based study [published online ahead of print, 2020 Aug 11]. Clin Neurol Neurosurg. 2020;198:106153. doi:10.1016/j.clineuro.2020.106153

Subthalamic deep brain stimulation for Parkinson’s disease outcome

Subthalamic deep brain stimulation for Parkinson’s disease outcome

The surgical and clinical outcomes of asleep DBS for Parkinson’s disease are comparable to those of awake DBS 1).

Suboptimal targeting within the STN can give rise to intolerable sensorimotor side effects, such as dysarthria, contractions and paresthesias 2) 3) 4). eye movement perturbations, and psychiatric symptoms 5) 6) 7), limiting the management of motor symptoms. The small size of the STN motor territory and the consequences of spreading current to immediately adjacent structures obligate precise targeting. Neurosurgeons therefore rely on a combination of imaging, electrophysiology, kinesthetic responses, and stimulation testing to accurately place the DBS lead into the sensorimotor domain of STN 8) 9) 10).

Deep Brain Stimulation has been associated with post-operative neuropsychology changes, especially in verbal memory.

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of subthalamic nucleus (STN) is widely accepted to treat advanced Parkinson disease (PD). However, published studies were mainly conducted in Western centers 11).

High frequency subthalamic nucleus (STN) deep brain stimulation (DBS) improves the cardinal motor signs of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and attenuates STN alpha/beta band neural synchrony in a voltage-dependent manner. While there is a growing interest in the behavioral effects of lower frequency (60 Hz) DBS, little is known about its effect on STN neural synchrony.

Low-frequency stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus via the optimal contacts is effective in improving overall motor function of patients with Parkinson Disease 12). In Parkinson’s disease significantly improved important aspects of QoL as measured by PDQ-39. The improvements were maintained at 2 years follow-up except for social support and communication. Sobstyl et al., demonstrated a positive correlation between changes in the off condition of motor UPDRS scores and Unified Dyskinesia Rating Scale in several PDQ-39 dimensions, whereas fluctuation UPDRS scores were negatively correlated with PDQ-39 mobility scores 13).

The degree of clinical improvement achieved by deep brain stimulation (DBS) is largely dependent on the accuracy of lead placement.

A study reports on the evaluation of intraoperative MRI (iMRI) for adjusting deviated electrodes to the accurate anatomical position during DBS surgery and acute intracranial changes 14).

Although dementia is a contraindication in deep brain stimulation for Parkinson’s disease, the concept is supported by little scientific evidence. Moreover, it is unclear whether PD with mild cognitive impairment (PD-MCI) or domain-specific cognitive impairments affect the outcome of DBS in non-demented PD patients.

Baseline cognitive levels of patients with PD who underwent DBS were classified into PD with dementia (PDD) (n = 15), PD-MCI (n = 210), and normal cognition (PD-NC) (n = 79). The impact of the cognitive level on key DBS outcome measures [mortality, nursing home admission, progression to Hoehn&Yahr (HY) stage 5 and progression to PDD] were analyzed using Cox regression models. Park et al. also investigated whether impairment of a specific cognitive domain could predict these outcomes in non-demented patients.

Results: Patients with PDD showed a substantially higher risk of nursing home admission and progression to HY stage 5 compared with patients with PD-MCI [hazard ratio (HR) 4.20, P = .002; HR = 5.29, P < .001] and PD-NC (HR 7.50, P < .001; HR = 7.93, P < .001). MCI did not alter the prognosis in patients without dementia, but those with visuospatial impairment showed poorer outcomes for nursing home admission (P = .015), progression to HY stage 5 (P = .027) and PDD (P = .006).

Conclusions: Cognitive profiles may stratify the pre-operative risk and predict long-term outcomes of DBS in PD 15).



Wang J, Ponce FA, Tao J, Yu HM, Liu JY, Wang YJ, Luan GM, Ou SW. Comparison of Awake and Asleep Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson’s Disease: A Detailed Analysis Through Literature Review. Neuromodulation. 2019 Dec 12. doi: 10.1111/ner.13061. [Epub ahead of print] Review. PubMed PMID: 31830772.
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Chiou SM, Lin YC, Huang HM. One-year Outcome of Bilateral Subthalamic Stimulation in Parkinson Disease: An Eastern Experience. World Neurosurg. 2015 Jun 10. pii: S1878-8750(15)00709-3. doi: 0.1016/j.wneu.2015.06.002. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 26072454.

Khoo HM, Kishima H, Hosomi K, Maruo T, Tani N, Oshino S, Shimokawa T, Yokoe M, Mochizuki H, Saitoh Y, Yoshimine T. Low-frequency subthalamic nucleus stimulation in Parkinson’s disease: A randomized clinical trial. Mov Disord. 2014 Jan 21. doi: 10.1002/mds.25810. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 24449169.

Sobstyl M, Ząbek M, Górecki W, Mossakowski Z. Quality of life in advanced Parkinson’s disease after bilateral subthalamic stimulation: 2 years follow-up study. Clin Neurol Neurosurg. 2014 Sep;124:161-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clineuro.2014.06.019. Epub 2014 Jun 23. PubMed PMID: 25051167.

Cui Z, Pan L, Song H, Xu X, Xu B, Yu X, Ling Z. Intraoperative MRI for optimizing electrode placement for deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus in Parkinson disease. J Neurosurg. 2016 Jan;124(1):62-9. doi: 10.3171/2015.1.JNS141534. Epub 2015 Aug 14. PubMed PMID: 26274983.

Park KW, Jo S, Kim MS, et al. Cognitive profile as a predictor of the long-term outcome after deep brain stimulation in Parkinson’s disease [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jul 28]. J Neurol Sci. 2020;417:117063. doi:10.1016/j.jns.2020.117063
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