Traumatic spinal cord injury treatment

Early decompression surgery post-SCI can enhance patient outcomes, but does not directly facilitate neural repair and regeneration. Currently, there are no U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved pharmacological therapies to augment motor function and functional recovery in individuals with traumatic SCI.

Acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating event with far-reaching physical, emotional, and economic consequences for patients, families, and society at large. Timely delivery of specialized care has reduced mortality; however, long-term neurological recovery continues to be limited. In recent years, a number of exciting neuroprotective and regenerative strategies have emerged and have come under active investigation in clinical trials, and several more are coming down the translational pipeline. Among ongoing trials are RISCIS (riluzole), INSPIRE study (Neuro-Spinal Scaffold), MASC (minocycline), and SPRING (VX-210). Microstructural MRI techniques have improved our ability to image the injured spinal cord at high resolution. This innovation, combined with serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis, holds the promise of providing a quantitative biomarker readout of spinal cord neural tissue injury, which may improve prognostication and facilitate stratification of patients for enrollment into clinical trials. Given evidence of the effectiveness of early surgical decompression and growing recognition of the concept that “time is spine,” infrastructural changes at a systems level are being implemented in many regions around the world to provide a streamlined process for transfer of patients with acute SCI to a specialized unit. With the continued aging of the population, central cord syndrome is soon expected to become the most common form of acute traumatic SCI; characterization of the pathophysiologynatural history, and optimal treatment of these injuries is hence a key public health priority. Collaborative international efforts have led to the development of clinical practice guidelines for traumatic SCI based on robust evaluation of current evidence 1).

1)

Badhiwala JH, Ahuja CS, Fehlings MG. Time is spine: a review of translational advances in spinal cord injury. J Neurosurg Spine. 2018 Dec 20;30(1):1-18. doi: 10.3171/2018.9.SPINE18682. Review. PubMed PMID: 30611186.

5 aminolevulinic acid fluorescence guided resection of spinal tumor

Multiple studies have attempted to evaluate the utility of 5-ALA-aided resection of spinal neoplasms.

Wainwright et al., from the Westchester Medical CenterTohoku University Hospital, reviewed the existing literature on the use of 5-ALA and PpIXfluorescence as an aid to resection of primary and secondary spinal neoplasms by searching the PUBMED and EMBASE database for records up to March 2018. Data was abstracted from all studies describing spinal neurosurgical uses in the English language.

In the reviewed studies, the most useful fluorescence was observed in meningiomas, ependymomas, drop metastases from cerebral gliomas, and spinal hemangiopericytoma, which is consistent with applications in cerebral neoplasms.

The available literature is significantly limited by a lack of standardized methods for measurement and quantification of 5-ALA fluorescence. The results of the reviewed studies should guide future development of rational trial protocols for the use of 5-ALA guided resection in spinal neoplasms1).


Three hours before the induction of anesthesia, 5-ALA was administered to patients with different intra- and extradural spinal tumors. In all patients a neurosurgical resection or biopsy of the spinal tumor was performed under conventional white-light microscopy. During each surgery, the presence of Protoporphyrin IX fluorescence was additionally assessed using a modified neurosurgical microscope. At the end of an assumed gross-total resection (GTR) under white-light microscopy, a final inspection of the surgical cavity of fluorescing intramedullary tumors was performed to look for any remaining fluorescing foci. Histopathological tumor diagnosis was established according to the current WHO classification.

Fifty-two patients with 55 spinal tumors were included in this study. Resection was performed in 50 of 55 cases, whereas 5 of 55 cases underwent biopsy. Gross-total resection was achieved in 37 cases, STR in 5, and partial resection in 8 cases. Protoporphyrin IX fluorescence was visible in 30 (55%) of 55 cases, but not in 25 (45%) of 55 cases. Positive PpIX fluorescence was mainly detected in ependymomas (12 of 12), meningiomas (12 of 12), hemangiopericytomas (3 of 3), and in drop metastases of primary CNS tumors (2 of 2). In contrast, none of the neurinomas (8 of 8), carcinoma metastases (5 of 5), and primary spinal gliomas (3 of 3; 1 pilocytic astrocytoma, 1 WHO Grade II astrocytoma, 1 WHO Grade III anaplastic oligoastrocytoma) revealed PpIX fluorescence. It is notable that residual fluorescing tumor foci were detected and subsequently resected in 4 of 8 intramedullary ependymomas despite assumed GTR under white-light microscopy.

In this study, 5-ALA-PpIX fluorescence was observed in spinal tumors, especially ependymomas, meningiomas, hemangiopericytomas, and drop metastases of primary CNS tumors. In cases of intramedullary tumors, 5-ALA-induced PpIX fluorescence is a useful tool for the detection of potential residual tumor foci 2).


A study included 10 patients who underwent surgical resection of an intramedullary ependymoma. Nine patients were orally administered 5-ALA (20 mg/kg) 2 hours before the induction of anesthesia. 5-ALA fluorescence was visualized with an operating microscope. Tumors were removed in a standardized manner with electrophysiological monitoring. The extent of resection was evaluated on the basis of intraoperative findings and postoperative magnetic resonance imaging. Histopathological diagnosis was established according to World Health Organization 2007 criteria. Cell proliferation was assessed by Ki-67 labeling index.

5-ALA fluorescence was positive in 7 patients (6 grade II and 1 grade III) and negative in 2 patients (grade II). Intraoperative findings were dichotomized: Tumors covered by the cyst were easily separated from the normal parenchyma, whereas tumors without the cyst appeared to be continuous to the spinal cord. In these cases, 5-ALA fluorescence was especially valuable in delineating the ventral and cranial and caudal margins. Ki-67 labeling index was significantly higher in 5-ALA-positive cases compared with 5-ALA-negative cases. All patients improved neurologically or stabilized after surgery.

5-ALA fluorescence was useful for detecting tumor margins during surgery for intramedullary ependymoma. When combined with electrophysiological monitoring, fluorescence-guided resection could help to achieve maximum tumor resection safely 3).

References

1)

Wainwright JV, Endo T, Cooper JB, Tominaga T, Schmidt MH. The role of 5-aminolevulinic acid in spinal tumor surgery: a review. J Neurooncol. 2018 Dec 29. doi: 10.1007/s11060-018-03080-0. [Epub ahead of print] Review. PubMed PMID: 30594965.
2)

Millesi M, Kiesel B, Woehrer A, Hainfellner JA, Novak K, Martínez-Moreno M, Wolfsberger S, Knosp E, Widhalm G. Analysis of 5-aminolevulinic acid-induced fluorescence in 55 different spinal tumors. Neurosurg Focus. 2014 Feb;36(2):E11. doi: 10.3171/2013.12.FOCUS13485. PubMed PMID: 24484249.
3)

Inoue T, Endo T, Nagamatsu K, Watanabe M, Tominaga T. 5-aminolevulinic acid fluorescence-guided resection of intramedullary ependymoma: report of 9 cases. Neurosurgery. 2013 Jun;72(2 Suppl Operative):ons159-68; discussion ons168. doi: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e31827bc7a3. PubMed PMID: 23149963.

Traumatic cervical spinal cord injury outcome

Injury to the spine and spinal cord is one of the common cause of disability and death. Several factors affect the outcome; but which are these factors (alone and in combination), are determining the outcomes are still unknown.

Based on parameters from the International Standards, physicians are able to inform patients about the predicted long-term outcomes, including the ability to walk, with high accuracy. In those patients who cannot participate in a reliable physical neurological examination, magnetic resonance imaging and electrophysiological examinations may provide useful diagnostic and prognostic information. As clinical research on this topic continues, the prognostic value of the reviewed diagnostic assessments will become more accurate in the near future. These advances will provide useful information for physicians to counsel tSCI patients and their families during the catastrophic initial phase after the injury 1).

Preclinical and class III clinical data suggest improved outcomes by maintaining the mean arterial pressure > 85 mm Hg and avoiding hypoxemia at least for 7 days following cervical SCI, and this level of monitoring and support should occur in the ICU 2).


100 cases of patients under 18 years at accident with acute traumatic cervical spinal cord injury admitted to spinal cord injury SCI centers participating in the European Multi-center study about SCI (EMSCI) between January 2005 and April 2016 were reviewed. According to their age at accident, age 13 to 17, patients were selected for the adolescent group. After applying in- and exclusion criteria 32 adolescents were included. Each adolescent patient was matched with two adult SCI patients for analysis.

ASIA Impairment scale (AIS) grade, neurological, sensory, motor level, total motor score, and Spinal Cord Independence Measure (SCIM III) total score.

Mean AIS conversion, neurological, motor and sensory levels as well as total motor score showed no significantly statistical difference in adolescents compared to the adult control group after follow up of 6 months. Significantly higher final SCIM scores (p < 0.05) in the adolescent group compared to adults as well as a strong trend for a higher gain in SCIM score (p < 0.061) between first and last follow up was found.

Neurological outcome after traumatic cervical SCI is not superior in adolescents compared to adults in this cohort. Significantly higher SCIM scores indicate more functional gain for the adolescent patients after traumatic cervical SCI. Juvenile age appears to be an independent predictor for a better functional outcome. 3).


A prospective observational study at single-center with all patients with cervical spinal cord injury (SCI), attending our hospital within a week of injury during a period of October 2011 to July 2013 was included for analysis. Demographic factors such as age, gender, etiology of injury, preoperative American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) grade, upper (C2-C4) versus lower (C5-C7) cervical level of injury, imageological factors on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and timing of intervention were studied. Change in neurological status by one or more ASIA grade from the date of admission to 6 months follow-up was taken as an improvement. Functional grading was assessed using the functional independence measure (FIM) scale at 6 months follow-up.

A total of 39 patients with an acute cervical spine injury, managed surgically were included in this study. Follow-up was available for 38 patients at 6 months. No improvement was noted in patients with ASIA Grade A. Maximum improvement was noted in ASIA Grade D group (83.3%). The improvement was more significant in lower cervical region injuries. Patient with cord contusion showed no improvement as opposed to those with just edema wherein; the improvement was seen in 62.5% patients. Percentage of improvement in cord edema ≤3 segments (75%) was significantly higher than edema with >3 segments (42.9%). Maximum improvement in FIM score was noted in ASIA Grade C and patients who had edema (especially ≤3 segments) in MRI cervical spine.

Complete cervical SCI, upper-level cervical cord injury, patients showing MRI contusion, edema >3 segments group have worst improvement in neurological status at 6 months follow-up 4).


A total of 66 patients diagnosed with traumatic cervical SCI were selected for neurological assessment (using the International standards for neurological classification of spinal cord injury [ISNCSCI]) and functional evaluation (based on the Korean version Modified Barthel Index [K-MBI] and Functional Independence Measure [FIM]) at admission and upon discharge. All of the subjects received a preliminary electrophysiological assessment, according to which they were divided into two groups as follows: those with cervical radiculopathy (the SCI/Rad group) and those without (the SCI group).

A total of 32 patients with cervical SCI (48.5%) had cervical radiculopathy. The initial ISNCSCI scores for sensory and motor, K-MBI, and total FIM did not significantly differ between the SCI group and the SCI/Rad group. However, at discharge, the ISNCSCI scores for motor, K-MBI, and FIM of the SCI/Rad group showed less improvement (5.44±8.08, 15.19±19.39 and 10.84±11.49, respectively) than those of the SCI group (10.76±9.86, 24.79±19.65 and 17.76±15.84, respectively) (p<0.05). In the SCI/Rad group, the number of involved levels of cervical radiculopathy was negatively correlated with the initial and follow-up motors score by ISNCSCI.

Cervical radiculopathy is not rare in patients with traumatic cervical SCI, and it can impede neurological and functional improvement. Therefore, detection of combined cervical radiculopathy by electrophysiological assessment is essential for accurate prognosis of cervical SCI patients in the rehabilitation unit 5).

References

1)

van Middendorp JJ, Goss B, Urquhart S, Atresh S, Williams RP, Schuetz M. Diagnosis and prognosis of traumatic spinal cord injury. Global Spine J. 2011 Dec;1(1):1-8. doi: 10.1055/s-0031-1296049. PubMed PMID: 24353930; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3864437.
2)

Schwartzbauer G, Stein D. Critical Care of Traumatic Cervical Spinal Cord Injuries: Preventing Secondary Injury. Semin Neurol. 2016 Dec;36(6):577-585. Epub 2016 Dec 1. Review. PubMed PMID: 27907962.
3)

Geuther M, Grassner L, Mach O, Klein B, Högel F, Voth M, Bühren V, Maier D, Abel R, Weidner N, Rupp R, Fürstenberg CH; EMSCI study group, Schneidmueller D. Functional outcome after traumatic cervical spinal cord injury is superior in adolescents compared to adults. Eur J Paediatr Neurol. 2018 Dec 11. pii: S1090-3798(18)30247-2. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpn.2018.12.001. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30579697.
4)

Srinivas BH, Rajesh A, Purohit AK. Factors affecting outcome of acute cervical spine injury: A prospective study. Asian J Neurosurg. 2017 Jul-Sep;12(3):416-423. doi: 10.4103/1793-5482.180942. PubMed PMID: 28761518; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5532925.
5)

Kim SY, Kim TU, Lee SJ, Hyun JK. Prognosis for patients with traumatic cervical spinal cord injury combined with cervical radiculopathy. Ann Rehabil Med. 2014 Aug;38(4):443-9. doi: 10.5535/arm.2014.38.4.443. Epub 2014 Aug 28. PubMed PMID: 25229022; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4163583.

Spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumor

Epidemiology

Primary spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET) of the central nervous system has a low incidence. The intraspinal case is very rare. Around 30 cases have been reported so far 1).

Outcome

Spinal PNETs, like their cranial counterparts, are aggressive tumors and patients with these tumors typically have short survival times despite maximal surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Because no standard management guidelines exist for treating these tumors, a multitude of therapeutic strategies have been employed with varying success 2)

Case series

Ma et al. from the Beijing Tiantan Hospital summarized the cases of primary spinal PNET available in the database of the institute, either intramedullary or extramedullary cases. Then they did literature review of the same disease.

There were eight cases of primary spinal PNET available in there database, with one intramedullary case and seven extramedullary cases. Surgical resection was performed. The histology diagnosis was PNET. Peri-operative image examinations of the whole central nervous system (CNS) were performed to exclude tumors other than spinal cord origin. Then during literature review, 33 reports of the disease were included. The pre-operative diagnosis rate was low. The disease had a high recurrence rate and poor prognosis given available treatment 3).

Case reports

A 14-year-old teenage girl had suffered from progressive left upper back pain with bilateral lower legs weakness and numbness for 1 year. After treatment, left neck mass was noted 3 years later.

Initially, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed neurogenic tumor involving intradural extramedullary space of T5-T10. Pathology report showed PNET (World Health Organization grade IV) featuring lobules of neoplastic cells with round regular nuclei, high nucleus-to-cytoplasm ratio, and fibrillary cytoplasm. At the time of tumor recurrence, chest MRI then showed recurrent tumor at T2-T3 level of the epidural space with right neural foramina invasion. Brain MRI showed extensive bilateral calvarial metastases and leptomeningeal metastases in the right frontoparietal regions. Bone scan showed multiple bone metastases.

T-spine tumor removal and adjuvant radiotherapy (RT) to T-spine tumor bed were performed in the initial treatment. After clinical tumor recurrence, tumor removal was done again. She then received chemotherapy followed by whole brain irradiation with hippocampal sparing with 35 gray in 20 fractions.

After treatment, follow-up images showed that the disease was under control. There was no neurological sequela. She has survived more than 7 years from diagnosis and more than 4 years from recurrence to date 4).


A 5-year-old Moroccan boy, who presented with torticollis for 1 month. Computed tomography scan and Magnetic resonance imaging of the cervical spine revealed an extradural, dumbbell-shaped mass with extra-spinal extension at the left C1-C6 level. Multiple biopsy specimens were obtained. Histological examination revealed a highly cellular neoplasm composed of diffuse sheets of tumor cells having monomorphic, round to oval, finely vesicular nuclei. Immunohistochemical findings confirmed the diagnosis of intraspinal peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor.

After this illustrative case, they reviewed the literature on clinicopathological and therapeutic aspects. In practice, it is important to consider the diagnosis of peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor in children and adolescents with an apparent soft-tissue mass located in the spine 5).


A 60-year-old female, which presented clinically as an intraspinal tumor, causing symptoms of lower back pain, numbness and pain in the right lower extremity. The patient underwent tumorectomy. Following primary therapy, the symptoms of spinal cord compression were relieved. The patient underwent several courses of radiotherapy following surgery but refused to continue with chemotherapy. After a further four months, the tumors recurred and the patient succumbed to the disease 6).


A two years old female child presented with weakness both lower limbs. Preoperative MRI of the spine and paravertebral regionIso – hyper intense posterior placed extradural lesion, non contrast enhancing from D11-L2 levels with cord compression D9 to L3 laminectomy done. Granulation tissue found from D11 to L2. with cord compression. The granulation tissue removed in toto. The pathological findings were consistent with PNET. Post operative neurological improvement was minimal. Cranial screening ruled out any intracranialtumour. Hence a diagnosis of primary spinal PNET was made. A review of the literature shows that only 19 cases of primary intraspinal PNETs have been reported to date and the present case extradural in location. Primary intraspinal PNETs are rare tumors and carry a poor prognosis 7).


Multimodal therapy of an intramedullary cervical primitive neuroectodermal tumor in an adult. 8).


A 22-year-old woman with history of severe progressive neck pain, without radiation, associated with paresthesia in the right arm, and palpable right posterior cervical mass. Neurological examination showed increased reflexes in all four limbs, bilateral Hoffman’s sign, right Babinski’s sign, and right hemi-hypoesthesia. Neuroimaging revealed a right posterior cervical lesion with heterogeneous contrast enhancement extending to the neural foramina of the atlas and axis. Patient underwent microsurgical removal of the lesion, and histopathological and immunohistochemical analysis confirmed the diagnosis of peripheral primitive PNET (pPNET). The patient had adjuvant treatment with radiotherapy and chemotherapy. After twelve months, neuroimaging showed no signs of tumor regrowth and the patient had no neurological deficits. However, three months later, the patient developed hydrocephalus and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was positive for neoplastic cells. No other treatment was administered and the patient died.

pPNET is a rare malignant tumor with poor prognosis, although promising results with multimodal treatment-surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. Diagnosis requires immunohistochemical analysis, with identification of neuronal differentiation markers 9).


A 18-year-old female with conus intramedullary tumor diagnosed to be primary spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumor following histopathological examination after surgery 10).


A female who presented at age 21 with diffuse involvement of the lower spinal cord. After biopsy and successful treatment with radiation and chemotherapy, she recurred 10 years later with disease in her cerebellum. She was reinduced with chemotherapy and subsequently received high-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell support. She is alive and free of disease 11 years after her initial presentation. This represents the longest survival ever documented for a primary spinal PNET 11).


A 15-year-old girl who presented with gradual onset, over 1 month, of upper back pain and bilateral lower leg weakness. A thoracic spine MRI showed a dumbbell-shaped epidural mass at T2-4 with right paraspinal and posterior mediastinal extension. Surgical resection of the epidural tumor for decompression was performed. The pathologic examination revealed a PNET. Primary spinal PNETs typically have a poor prognosis and optimal therapy has not yet been defined. Surgical resection, with the combination of chemo-radiotherapy or radiotherapy, leads to better outcomes. However, primary epidural PNETs may be classified as a subtype of spinal PNETs because they are free from intrathecal invasion. For these patients, surgery alone and surgery combined with radiotherapy or chemo-radiotherapy remain controversial. Our patient received surgery alone and, 1y ear later, has experienced no local recurrence within the epidural space but the mediastinal part of the tumor has enlarged 12).


A 45-year-old man with a peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumour arising in the cervical spine. Alexander et al., believed this to be the first report of this type of tumour in the cervical spine 13).


A 25-year-old male patient presented with an extremely rare primary spinal peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor (pPNET) manifesting as acutely progressive paraparesis and back pain. Neuroimaging and intraoperative examination showed that the tumor was confined to the epidural space of the thoracic spine. The patient was treated successfully by gross total resection of the tumor followed by chemotherapy and local radiotherapy. The present case illustrates the unexpected occurrence and important differential diagnosis of primary epidural pPNET of the thoracic spine in young patients presenting with progressive paraparesis and back pain 14).


A 29-year-old male with a dumbbell-shaped pPNET at the T9-10 spine level, including details of his examination, surgical procedures applied, histological and genetic findings, and his subsequent treatment. They discussed the clinical course, the pathology and treatment for this disease, the surgical approach to thoracic dumbbell tumors and reviewed the literature. This is the first report of a case of a dumbbell-shaped intradural and spinal peripheral PNET 15).


A 54-year-old woman who presented with quadriplegia and bladder and bowel dysfunction. The patient had suffered symptoms of neck pain for 1 month and left shoulder weakness for 10 days. Magnetic resonance imaging of the cervical spine revealed an intramedullary mass extending from C-2 to C-5 with an exophytic component in the adjacent left subarachnoid space. Multiple biopsy specimens were obtained, and a partial excision was performed. Histological examination revealed nodular growth and neuronal differentiation, with a striking resemblance to desmoplastic medulloblastoma. A positron emission tomography scan did not reveal uptake at any site. These findings confirmed the diagnosis of a primary intramedullary PNET. Postoperatively, the patient was given craniospinal radiotherapy with a radiation boost to the tumor bed 16).

References

1) , 3)

Ma J, Ma S, Yang J, Jia G, Jia W. Primary spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumor: A single center series with literature review. J Spinal Cord Med. 2018 Dec 18:1-9. doi: 10.1080/10790268.2018.1547862. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30561250.
2)

Ellis JA, Rothrock RJ, Moise G, McCormick PC 2nd, Tanji K, Canoll P, Kaiser MG, McCormick PC. Primitive neuroectodermal tumors of the spine: a comprehensive review with illustrative clinical cases. Neurosurg Focus. 2011 Jan;30(1):E1. doi: 10.3171/2010.10.FOCUS10217. Review. PubMed PMID: 21194274.
4)

Chen F, Chiou SS, Lin SF, Lieu AS, Chen YT, Huang CJ. Recurrent spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumor with brain and bone metastases: A case report. Medicine (Baltimore). 2017 Nov;96(46):e8658. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000008658. PubMed PMID: 29145292; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5704837.
5)

Khmou M, Malihy A, Lamalmi N, Rouas L, Alhamany Z. Peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumors of the spine: a case report and review of the literature. BMC Res Notes. 2016 Sep 9;9(1):438. doi: 10.1186/s13104-016-2246-5. Review. PubMed PMID: 27613377; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5016941.
6)

Meng XT, He SS. Primitive neuroectodermal tumor in the spinal canal: A case report. Oncol Lett. 2015 Apr;9(4):1934-1936. Epub 2015 Jan 27. PubMed PMID: 25789071; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4356409.
7)

Venkataraman S, Pandian C, Kumar SA. Primary spinal primitive neuroectodermal tumour – a case report. Ann Neurosci. 2013 Apr;20(2):80-2. doi: 10.5214/ans.0972.7531.200211. PubMed PMID: 25206019; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4117112.
8)

Coumans JV, Walcott BP, Nahed BV, Oh KS, Chi AS. Multimodal therapy of an intramedullary cervical primitive neuroectodermal tumor in an adult. J Clin Oncol. 2012 Jan 10;30(2):e15-8. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2011.38.6474. Epub 2011 Dec 5. PubMed PMID: 22147740.
9)

Cabral GA, Nunes CF, Melo JO Jr, Guimarães RD, Gonçalves MB, Rodrigues RS, Correa JL, Teixeira OM Jr, Klescoski J Jr, Lapenta MA, Landeiro JA. Peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the cervical spine. Surg Neurol Int. 2012;3:91. doi: 10.4103/2152-7806.99938. Epub 2012 Aug 21. PubMed PMID: 23050205; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3463148.
10)

Harbhajanka A, Jain M, Kapoor SK. Primary spinal intramedullary primitive neuroectodermal tumor. J Pediatr Neurosci. 2012 Jan;7(1):67-9. doi: 10.4103/1817-1745.97631. PubMed PMID: 22837786; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3401662.
11)

Gollard RP, Rosen L, Anson J, Mason J, Khoury J. Intramedullary PNET of the spine: long-term survival after combined modality therapy and subsequent relapse. J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2011 Mar;33(2):107-12. doi: 10.1097/MPH.0b013e3181f84b7f. PubMed PMID: 21228722.
12)

Chang SI, Tsai MC, Tsai MD. An unusual primitive neuroectodermal tumor in the thoracic epidural space. J Clin Neurosci. 2010 Feb;17(2):261-3. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2009.05.018. Epub 2009 Dec 29. PubMed PMID: 20036552.
13)

Alexander HS, Koleda C, Hunn MK. Peripheral Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumour (pPNET) in the cervical spine. J Clin Neurosci. 2010 Feb;17(2):259-61. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2009.05.020. Epub 2009 Dec 29. PubMed PMID: 20036553.
14)

Kiatsoontorn K, Takami T, Ichinose T, Chokyu I, Tsuyuguchi N, Ohsawa M, Ohata K. Primary epidural peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the thoracic spine. Neurol Med Chir (Tokyo). 2009 Nov;49(11):542-5. PubMed PMID: 19940407.
15)

Hrabálek L, Kalita O, Svebisova H, Ehrmann J Jr, Hajduch M, Trojanec R, Kala M. Dumbbell-shaped peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the spine–case report and review of the literature. J Neurooncol. 2009 Apr;92(2):211-7. doi: 10.1007/s11060-008-9744-9. Epub 2008 Dec 3. Review. PubMed PMID: 19050994.
16)

Jain A, Jalali R, Nadkarni TD, Sharma S. Primary intramedullary primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the cervical spinal cord. Case report. J Neurosurg Spine. 2006 Jun;4(6):497-502. PubMed PMID: 16776362.

Lumbar spinal stenosis case series

A successive series of 102 patients with lumbar spinal stenosis from Aachen (with and without previous lumbar surgery) were treated with decompression alone during a 3-year period. Data on pre- and postoperative back pain and leg pain (numerical rating scale [NRS] scale) were retrospectively collected from questionnaires with a return rate of 65% (n = 66). The complete cohort as well as patients with first-time surgery and re-decompression were analyzed separately. Patients were dichotomized to short-term follow-up (< 100 weeks) and long-term follow-up (> 100 weeks) postsurgery.

Overall, both back pain (NRS 4.59 postoperative versus 7.89 preoperative; p < 0.0001) and leg pain (NRS 4.09 versus 6.75; p < 0.0001) improved postoperatively. The short-term follow-up subgroup (50%, n = 33) showed a significant reduction in back pain (NRS 4.0 versus 6.88; p < 0.0001) and leg pain (NRS 2.49 versus 6.91: p < 0.0001). Similar results could be observed for the long-term follow-up subgroup (50%, n = 33) with significantly less back pain (NRS 3.94 versus 7.0; p < 0.0001) and leg pain (visual analog scale 3.14 versus 5.39; p < 0.002) postoperatively. Patients with previous decompression surgery benefit significantly regarding back pain (NRS 4.82 versus 7.65; p < 0.0024), especially in the long-term follow-up subgroup (NRS 4.75 versus 7.67; p < 0.0148). There was also a clear trend in favor of leg pain in patients with previous surgery; however, it was not significant.

Decompression of lumbar spinal stenosis without fusion led to a significant and similar reduction of back pain and leg pain in a short-term and a long-term follow-up group. Patients without previous surgery benefited significantly better, whereas patients with previous decompression benefited regarding back pain, especially for long-term follow-up with a clear trend in favor of leg pain 1).


A total of 25 patients between May 2015 and June 2016 affected by radiologically demonstrated one-level lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) with facet joint degeneration and grade I spondylolisthesis were included in this prospective study. All the patients underwent laminectomyforaminotomy, and one-level facet fixation (Facet-Link, Inc., Rockaway, New Jersey, United States). Pre- and postoperative clinical (Oswestry Disability Index[ODI], Short Form 36 [SF-36]) and radiologic (radiographs, magnetic resonance imaging, computed tomography) data were collected and analyzed.

Mean follow-up was 12 months. The L4L5 level was involved in 18 patients (72%) and L5S1 in 7 patients (28%); the average operative time was 80 minutes (range: 65-148 minutes), and the mean blood loss was 160 mL (range: 90-200 mL). ODI and SF-36 showed a statistically significant (p < 0.05) improvement at last follow-up.

Transfacet fixation is a safe and effective treatment option in patients with single-level LSS, facet joint degeneration, and mild instability 2).

2017

A retrospective matched-pair cohort study included a total of 144 patients who underwent surgery for bisegmental spinal stenosis at the levels L3-4 and L4-5 between 2008 and 2012. There were 72 matching pairs that corresponded in sex, year of birth, and width of the stenosed segments. The patients’ impairments were reported before, immediately after, and 6 and 12 months after surgery using the Oswestry Disability Questionnaire (ODQ-D) and the EuroQol-5D (EQ-5D). The data were evaluated statistically. Results The comparison of both surgical procedures regarding walking ability (walking a distance with and without a walking aid) revealed a significant difference. Patients who underwent hemilaminectomy had better postoperative results. The individual criteria of the ODQ-D and EQ-5D revealed no significant differences between 2-level fenestration and hemilaminectomy; however, there is always significant postoperative improvement in comparison with preoperative status. Age, sex, body mass index, comorbidities, smoking, and alcohol consumption had no influence on the surgical results. The reoperation rate was between 13% and 15% for both surgical techniques, not being significantly different. Conclusion Fenestration and hemilaminectomy are equivalent therapies for bisegmental lumbar spinal canal stenosis. Regarding walking, the study revealed better results for hemilaminectomy than for fenestration in this cohort of patients. Pain intensity, personal care, lifting and carrying of objects, sitting, social life, and travel all improved significantly postoperatively as compared with preoperatively. In both groups, health status as the decisive predictor improved considerably after surgery. We could show that both surgical methods result in significant postoperative improvement of all the individual criteria of the ODQ-D and the EQ-5D 3).

2016

726 patients with lumbar stenosis (without spondylolisthesis or scoliosis) and a baseline back pain score ≥ 5 of 10 who underwent surgical decompression only. No patient was reported to have significant spondylolisthesis, scoliosis, or sagittal malalignment. Standard demographic and surgical variables were collected, as well as patient outcomes including back and leg pain scores, Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), and EuroQoL 5D (EQ-5D) at baseline and 3 and 12 months postoperatively. RESULTS The mean age of the cohort was 65.6 years, and 407 (56%) patients were male. The mean body mass index was 30.2 kg/m2, and 40% of patients had 2-level decompression, 29% had 3-level decompression, 24% had 1-level decompression, and 6% had 4-level decompression. The mean estimated blood loss was 130 ml. The mean operative time was 100.85 minutes. The vast majority of discharges (88%) were routine home discharges. At 3 and 12 months postoperatively, there were significant improvements from baseline for back pain (7.62 to 3.19 to 3.66), leg pain (7.23 to 2.85 to 3.07), EQ-5D (0.55 to 0.76 to 0.75), and ODI (49.11 to 27.20 to 26.38). CONCLUSIONS Through the 1st postoperative year, patients with lumbar stenosis-without spondylolisthesis, scoliosis, or sagittal malalignment-and clinically significant back pain improved after decompression-only surgery 4).

2015

88 patients with LSS (47 men and 41 women) who ranged in age from 39 to 86 years (mean age 68.7 years). All patients had undergone microendoscopic laminotomy at Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine from May 2008 through October 2012. The minimum duration of clinical and radiological follow-up was 6 months. All patients were evaluated by Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) and visual analog scale (VAS) scores for low back painleg pain, and leg numbness before and after surgery.

The distance between the C7 plumb line and the posterior corner of the sacrum (sagittal vertical axis [SVA]) was measured on lateral standing radiographs of the entire spine obtained before surgery.

Radiological factors and clinical outcomes were compared between patients with a preoperative SVA ≥ 50 mm (forward-bending trunk [F] group) and patients with a preoperative SVA < 50 mm (control [C] group).

A total of 35 patients were allocated to the F group (19 male and 16 female) and 53 to the C group (28 male and 25 female).

The mean SVA was 81.0 mm for patients in the F group and 22.0 mm for those in the C group. At final follow-up evaluation, no significant differences between the groups were found for the JOA score improvement ratio (73.3% vs 77.1%) or the VAS score for leg numbness (23.6 vs 24.0 mm); the VAS score for low-back pain was significantly higher for those in the F group (21.1 mm) than for those in the C group (11.0 mm); and the VAS score for leg pain tended to be higher for those in the F group (18.9 ± 29.1 mm) than for those in the C group (9.4 ± 16.0 mm).

Preoperative alignment of the spine in the sagittal plane did not affect JOA scores after microendoscopic laminotomy in patients with LSS. However, low-back pain was worse for patients with preoperative anterior translation of the C-7 plumb line than for those without 5).1) Geiger MF, Bongartz N, Blume C, Clusmann H, Müller CA. Improvement of Back and Leg Pain after Lumbar Spinal Decompression without Fusion. J Neurol Surg A Cent Eur Neurosurg. 2018 Dec 5. doi: 10.1055/s-0038-1669473. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30517963.2) Trungu S, Pietrantonio A, Forcato S, Tropeano MP, Martino L, Raco A. Transfacet Screw Fixation for the Treatment of Lumbar Spinal Stenosis with Mild Instability: A Preliminary Study. J Neurol Surg A Cent Eur Neurosurg. 2018 Sep;79(5):358-364. doi: 10.1055/s-0038-1655760. Epub 2018 Jul 16. PubMed PMID: 30011420.3) Schüppel J, Weber F. Retrospective Matched-Pair Cohort Study on Effect of Bisegmental Fenestration versus Hemilaminectomy for Bisegmental Spinal Canal Stenosis at L3-L4 and L4-L5. J Neurol Surg A Cent Eur Neurosurg. 2017 Jan 9. doi: 10.1055/s-0036-1597617. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 28068753.4) Crawford CH 3rd, Glassman SD, Mummaneni PV, Knightly JJ, Asher AL. Back pain improvement after decompression without fusion or stabilization in patients with lumbar spinal stenosis and clinically significant preoperative back pain. J Neurosurg Spine. 2016 Nov;25(5):596-601. PubMed PMID: 27285666.5) Dohzono S, Toyoda H, Matsumoto T, Suzuki A, Terai H, Nakamura H. The influence of preoperative spinal sagittal balance on clinical outcomes after microendoscopic laminotomy in patients with lumbar spinal canal stenosis. J Neurosurg Spine. 2015 Jul;23(1):49-54. doi: 10.3171/2014.11.SPINE14452. Epub 2015 Apr 3. PubMed PMID: 25840041.

Spinal Schwannoma Classification

Spinal Schwannoma Classification

Preoperative planning remains crucial for successful Spinal Schwannoma treatment and relies to a great extent on proper tumor classification. The literature includes multiple classification systems for spinal schwannomas, each of which is associated with both positive and negative ramifications for preoperative planning 1) 2) 3)4).

Consequently, there is a lack of consensus concerning the optimal system of classification for schwannomas 5).

The literature includes numerous schwannoma classification systems. Jinnai and Koyama 6) classified schwannomas into five groups based on the relationship between the tumor and the dura mater and/or intervertebral foramen. This classification system is useful, as it takes into consideration tumor localization relative to the dura, but it does not take into account volume, which is important for preoperative surgical planning.

Sridhar classification

Sridhar 7) was the first, in 2001, to suggest a classification system of benign spinal schwannoma including giant and invasive spinal schwannomas (type I to V).

Park et al. 8) reported the use of a new classification system, and Type VI and Type VII were added. But the classification system as defined by Park et al. were inadequate because both the figures and the tumors were not clearly described in their manuscript.

A case could not be classified based on Sridhar’s spinal schwannoma classification system. Thus, as shown in a case, of Kotil type VIII must be added to the modified Sridhar classification (Kotil classification) system of benign spinal schwannomas 9).

Sun and Pamir however, think classification of seven distinct types of schwannomas using Sridhar et al.’s system is not practical because the characteristics of seven tumors types are difficult to remember. Another drawback of their system is that tumor volume is only considered for dumbbell-shaped tumors, and craniocaudal dimension is not a consideration, which limit the diagnostic value and consistency of the classification system 10).

Asazuma Classification

Asazuma et al. 11) devised a schwannoma classification system for cervical dumbbell- shaped tumors that consisted of nine categories. An important drawback of their classification system is that it cannot be used for thoracic or lumbar schwannomas, which are as common as cervical schwannomas.

Asazuma et al. classification system for dumbbell spinal schwannoma:

Type 1 intradural extradural restricted to the spinal canal. The constriction occurs at the dura.

Type II are all extradural, and are subclassified as:

IIa do not expand beyond the neural foramen.

IIb inside spinal canal + paravertebral.

IIc foraminal + paravertebral.

Type IIIa are intradural and extradural foraminal, IIIb are intradural and extradural paravertebral.

Type IV are extradural and intravertebral.

Type V are extradural and extralaminar with laminar invasion.

Type VI show multidirectional bone erosion.

Craniocaudal spread: IF & TF designate the number of intervertebral foramina and transverse foramina involved, respectively (e.g. IF stage 2 = 2 foramens).

Schwannomas involving C1 & C2: May involve vertebral arteries and require additional caution.

Sun and Pamir Classification

It is based on consideration of tumor volume and localization relative to the dura and spinal canal. For approximate calculation of tumor volume, spinal schwannomas were considered ellipsoid bodies, and tumor volume was calculated using the following formula:

Tumor volume = 4 / 3 π × (craniocaudal length / 2) × (transverse diameter / 2)2 .

Tumors were then assigned to 1–3 volume groups (group A, B, and C) and designated as 1 of 4 types (type I, II, III, and IV) accord- ing to localization (i.e., group B type II tumor). Tumor volume <2 cm3 was considered group A, 2–4 cm3 group B, and >4 cm3 group C. Tumor typing was as follows: localized exclusively intra- durally: type I; intradural localization with extradural extension to the nerve root foramina, but restricted to the spinal canal: type II; intradural dumbbell-shaped tumor in the spinal canal extending to the extraforaminal region: type III; and localized completely outside the root foramina: type IV


Sridhar et al.’s 12) classification system is arguably the most similar of the previously reported systems to the novel classification system described by Sun and Pamir however, they think classification of seven distinct types of schwannomas using Sridhar et al.’s system is not practical because the characteristics of seven tumors types are difficult to remember. Another drawback of their system is that tumor volume is only considered for dumbbell-shaped tumors, and craniocaudal dimension is not a consideration, which limit the diagnostic value and consistency of the classification system 13).


Based on the findings, Sun and Pamir think that all schwannomas should be classified according to localization and volume, so as to achieve the desired benefit of classification—ease and reliability of preoperative decision making and preparation. In addition, this classification system makes tumor localization easier to understand, as compared to other systems, and is suitable for all schwannoma types.

It is a simple and effective tool that shows extremely helpful for avoiding unnecessary surgical approaches and complications. Due to the system’s simplicity of having only three tumor groups and its reliability—indicated by the associated low postoperative side effect rate, use of this novel classification system should be considered by any surgical department that seeks a standardized schwannoma surgery protocol. 14).


Dumbbell spinal schwannoma

Giant spinal schwannoma

Cervical spinal schwannoma

Thoracic spinal schwannoma

Lumbar spinal schwannoma

References

1)

Chowdhury FH, Haque MR, Sarker MH. High cervical spinal schwannoma; microneurosurgical management: an experience of 15 cases. Acta Neurol Taiwan (2013) 22:59–66.
2)

Fernandes RL, Lynch JC, Welling L, Gonçalevs M, Tragante R, Temponi V, et al. Complete removal of the spinal nerve sheath tumors. Surgical techniques and results from a series of 30 patients. Arq Neuropsiquiatr (2014) 72:312–7. doi:10.1590/0004-282×20140008
3)

Iwasaki Y, Hida K, Koyanagi I, Yoshimoto T, Abe H. Anterior approach for dumbbell type cervical neurinoma. Neurol Med Chir (1999) 39:835–9. doi:10.2176/nmc.39.835
4)

Kim P, Ebersold MJ, Onofrio BM, Quast LM. Surgery of spinal nerve schwannoma. Risk of neurological deficit after resection of involved root. J Neurosurg (1989) 71:810–4. doi:10.3171/jns.1989.71.6.0810
5)

Sun I, Pamir MN. Non-Syndromic Spinal Schwannomas: A Novel Classification. Front Neurol. 2017 Jul 17;8:318. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2017.00318. eCollection 2017. PubMed PMID: 28769861; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5511849.
6)

Jinnai T, Koyama T. Clinical characteristics of spinal nerve sheath tumors: analysis of 149 cases. Neurosurgery (2005) 56:510–5. doi:10.1227/01. NEU.0000153752.59565.BB
7) , 12)

Sridhar K, Ramamurthi R, Vasudevan MC, Ramamurthi B. Giant invasive spinal schwannomas: definition and surgical management. J Neurosurg (2001) 94:210–5.
8)

Park SC, Chung SK, Choe G, Kim HJ. Spinal intraosseous schwannoma : a case report and review. J Korean Neurosurg Soc. 2009 Oct;46(4):403-8. doi: 10.3340/jkns.2009.46.4.403. Epub 2009 Oct 31. PubMed PMID: 19893734; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2773402.
9)

Kotil K. An extremely giant lumbar schwannoma: new classification (kotil) and mini-open microsurgical resection. Asian Spine J. 2014 Aug;8(4):506-11. doi: 10.4184/asj.2014.8.4.506. Epub 2014 Aug 19. PubMed PMID: 25187870; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4149996.
10) , 13) , 14)

Sun I, Pamir MN. Non-Syndromic Spinal Schwannomas: A Novel Classification. Front Neurol. 2017 Jul 17;8:318. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2017.00318. eCollection 2017. PubMed PMID: 28769861; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5511849.
11)

Asazuma T, Toyama Y, Maruiwa H, Fujimura Y, Hirabayashi K. Surgical strategy for cervical dumbbell tumors based on a three-dimensional classification. Spine (2004) 29:E10–4. doi:10.1097/01.BRS.0000103662. 13689.76

International 36th Course for Percutaneous Endoscopic Spinal Surgery and Complementary Minimal Invasive Techniques of the International Society for Minimal Intervention in Spinal Surgery: ISMISS

September 7 — September 8

Homburg Saar, Germany

More Information: http://www.ismiss.com/4-0-meetings.html

Degenerative Spinal Deformity: Creating Lordosis in the Lumbar Spine, An Issue of Neurosurgery Clinics of North America (The Clinics: Surgery)

Degenerative Spinal Deformity: Creating Lordosis in the Lumbar Spine, An Issue of Neurosurgery Clinics of North America (The Clinics: Surgery)

This issue of Neurosurgery Clinics, edited by Drs. Sigurd Berven and Praveen V. Mummaneni, will cover Degenerative Spinal Deformity: Creating Lordosis in the Lumbar Spine. Topics will include, but are not limited to, Spinopelvic Parameters; Location of lordosis (priority for L4-S1) and Age Adjustments; Approach Selection; Nuances of Pedicle Subtraction Osteotomy; Preventing Pseudarthrosis and PJK; The Challenge of Creating Lordosis in High Grade Dysplastic Spondylolisthesis; Sacropelvic Fixation; Evolution of the MISDEF Algorithm; Transpsoas Approach Nuances; Lateral Prepsoas Approach Nuances; Anterior Column Release; Navigation assisted MIS deformity correction; MIS TLIF; MIS PSO; and The challenge of L4-S1- fractional curves.

 

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