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1.  Development of an Ex Vivo Model for the Study of Cerebrovascular Function Utilizing Isolated Mouse Olfactory Artery 
Cerebral vessels, such as intracerebral perforating arterioles isolated from rat brain, have been widely used as an ex vivo model to study the cerebrovascular function associated with cerebrovascular disorders and the therapeutic effects of various pharmacological agents. These perforating arterioles, however, have demonstrated differences in the vascular architecture and reactivity compared with a larger leptomeningeal artery which has been commonly implicated in cerebrovascular disease. In this study, therefore, we developed the method for studying cerebrovascular function utilizing the olfactory artery isolated from the mouse brain.
The olfactory artery (OA) was isolated from the C57/BL6 wild-type mouse brain. After removing connective tissues, one side of the isolated vessel segment (approximately -500 µm in length) was cannulated and the opposite end of the vessel was completely sealed while being viewed with an inverted microscope. After verifying the absence of pressure leakage, we examined the vascular reactivity to various vasoactive agents under the fixed intravascular pressure (60 mm Hg).
We found that the isolated mouse OAs were able to constrict in response to vasoconstrictors, including KCl, phenylephrine, endothelin-1, and prostaglandin PGH2. Moreover, this isolated vessel demonstrated vasodilation in a dose-dependent manner when vasodilatory agents, acetylcholine and bradykinin, were applied.
Our findings suggest that the isolated olfactory artery would provide as a useful ex vivo model to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms of vascular function underlying cerebrovascular disorders and the direct effects of such disease-modifying pathways on cerebrovascular function utilizing pharmacological agents and genetically modified mouse models.
PMCID: PMC4323498
Cerebral artery; Vasodilation; Vasoconstriction
2.  Covered Stents for the Endovascular Treatment of a Direct Carotid Cavernous Fistula : Single Center Experiences with 10 Cases 
Covered stent has been recently reported as an effective alternative treatment for direct carotid cavernous fistulas (DCCFs). The purpose of this study is to describe our experiences with the treatment of DCCF with covered stents and to evaluate whether a covered stent has a potential to be used as the first choice in selected cases.
From February 2009 through July 2013, 10 patients underwent covered stent placement for a DCCF occlusion. Clinical and angiographic data were retrospectively reviewed.
Covered stent placement was performed for five patients primarily as the first choice and in the other five as an alternative option. Access and deployment of a covered stent was successful in all patients (100%) and total occlusion of the fistula was achieved in nine (90%). Complete occlusion immediately after the procedure was obtained in five patients (50%). Endoleak persisted in five patients and the fistulae were found to be completely occluded by one month control angiography in four. The other patient underwent additional coil embolization by a transvenous approach. Balloon inflation-related arterial dissection during the procedure was noted in two cases; healing was noted at follow-up angiography. One patient suffered an asymptomatic internal carotid artery occlusion noted seven months post-treatment.
Although endoleak is currently a common roadblock, our experience demonstrates that a covered stent has the potential to be used as the first choice in DCCF; this potential is likely to increase as experience with this device accumulates and the materials continue to improve.
PMCID: PMC4323499
Carotid cavernous fistula; Covered stent; Endovascular treatment
3.  A Design for Evaluation of the Trauma Apportionment in Cerebral Infarction after Trauma 
Posttraumatic cerebral infarction (CI) is a well-known complication of traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, the causation and apportionment of trauma in patients with CI after TBI is not easy. There is a scoring method, so-called trauma apportionment score (TAS) for CI, consisted with the age, the interval, and the severity of the TBI. We evaluated the reliability of this score.
We selected two typical cases of traumatic CI. We also selected consecutive 50 patients due to spontaneous CI. We calculated TAS in both patients with traumatic and spontaneous CI. To enhance the reliability, we revised TAS (rTAS) adding three more items, such as systemic illness, bad health habits, and doctor's opinion. We also calculated rTAS in the same patients.
Even in 50 patients with spontaneous CI, the TAS was 4 in 44 patients, and 5 in 6 patients. TAS could not assess the apportionment of trauma efficiently. We recalculated the rTAS in the same patients. The rTAS was not more than 11 in more than 70% of the spontaneous CI. Compared to TAS, rTAS definitely enhanced the discriminating ability. However, there were still significant overlapping areas.
TAS alone is insufficient to differentiate the cause or apportionment of trauma in some obscure cases of CI. Although the rTAS may enhance the reliability, it also should be used with cautions.
PMCID: PMC4323500
Cerebral infarction; Causality; Compensation and redress; Craniocerebral trauma
4.  The Influence of Pituitary Adenoma Size on Vision and Visual Outcomes after Trans-Sphenoidal Adenectomy: A Report of 78 Cases 
The aims of this study were to investigate the quantitative relationship between pituitary macroadenoma size and degree of visual impairment, and assess visual improvement after surgical resection of the tumor.
The medical records of patients with pituitary adenoma, who had undergone trans-sphenoidal adenectomy between January 2009 and January 2011, were reviewed. Patients underwent an ocular examination and brain MRI before and after surgery. The visual impairment score (VIS) was derived by combining the scores of best-corrected visual acuity and visual field. The relationship between VIS and tumor size/tumor type/position of the optic chiasm was assessed.
Seventy-eight patients were included (41 male, 37 female). Thirty-two (41%) patients experienced blurred vision or visual field defect as an initial symptom. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that tumors <2.2 cm tended to cause minimal or no visual impairment. Statistical analysis showed that 1) poor preoperative vision is related to tumor size, displacement of the optic chiasm in the sagittal view on MRI and optic atrophy, and 2) poorer visual prognosis is associated with greater preoperative VIS. In multivariate analysis the only factor significantly related to VIS improvement was increasing pituitary adenoma size, which predicted decreased improvement.
Results from this study show that pituitary adenomas larger than 2 cm cause defects in vision while adenomas 2 cm or smaller do not cause significant visual impairment. Patients with a large macroadenoma or giant adenoma should undergo surgical resection as soon as possible to prevent permanent visual loss.
PMCID: PMC4323501
Ophthalmologic surgical procedures; Pituitary adenoma; Visual fields; Visual impairment
5.  Clinical Analysis of Acute Radiculopathy after Osteoporotic Lumbar Compression Fracture 
The purpose of this study was to analyze the relationship between fracture pattern and the development of acute radiculopathy after osteoporotic lumbar compression fracture.
This study included 59 patients who underwent bone cement augmentation for osteoporotic compression fracture below the L2 level, which can lead to radiculopathic radiating pain. The patients were divided into two groups according to the presence of radiculopathy (group A : back pain only; group B : back pain with newly developed radiating pain). We categorized compression fractures into three types by the position of the fracture line. The incidence of newly developed radiculopathy was examined retrospectively for each compression fracture type.
The overall incidence of newly developed leg pain (group B) was 25%, and the frequency increased with descending spinal levels (L2 : 0%, L3 : 22%, L4 : 43%, and L5 : 63%). The back pain-only group (group A) had mostly superior-type fractures. On the other hand, the back pain with radiculopathy group (group B) had mostly inferior-type fractures. Most patients in group B showed significant relief of leg pain as well as back pain after bone cement augmentation.
The incidence of a newly developed, radiating pain after osteoporotic compression fractures increased gradually from the L3 to L5 levels. Most of these fractures were of the inferior type, and the bone cement augmentation procedures seemed to be sufficient for relief of both back and radiating pain.
PMCID: PMC4323502
Fracture; Osteoporosis; Radiculopathy
6.  Outcomes of Secondary Laminoplasty for Patients with Unsatisfactory Results after Anterior Multilevel Cervical Surgery 
To investigate the causes for failed anterior cervical surgery and the outcomes of secondary laminoplasty.
Seventeen patients failed anterior multilevel cervical surgery and the following conservative treatments between Feb 2003 and May 2011 underwent secondary laminoplasty. Outcomes were evaluated by the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) Scale and visual analogue scale (VAS) before the secondary surgery, at 1 week, 2 months, 6 months, and the final visit. Cervical alignment, causes for revision and complications were also assessed.
With a mean follow-up of 29.7±12.1 months, JOA score, recovery rate and excellent to good rate improved significantly at 2 months (p<0.05) and maintained thereafter (p>0.05). Mean VAS score decreased postoperatively (p<0.05). Lordotic angle maintained during the entire follow up (p>0.05). The causes for secondary surgery were inappropriate approach in 3 patients, insufficient decompression in 4 patients, adjacent degeneration in 2 patients, and disease progression in 8 patients. Complications included one case of C5 palsy, axial pain and cerebrospinal fluid leakage, respectively.
Laminoplasty has satisfactory results in failed multilevel anterior surgery, with a low incidence of complications.
PMCID: PMC4323503
Cervical spondylosis; Anterior discectomy and fusion; Anterior corpectomy and fusion; Laminoplasty
7.  Surgical Management with Radiation Therapy for Metastatic Spinal Tumors Located on Cervicothoracic Junction : A Single Center Study 
The cervicothoracic junction (CTJ) is a biomechanically and anatomically complex region that has traditionally posed problems for surgical access. In this retrospective study, we describe our clinical experiences of the treatment of metastatic spinal tumors at the CTJ and the results.
From June 2006 to December 2011, 23 patients who underwent surgery for spinal tumors involving the CTJ were enrolled in our study. All of the patients were operated on through the posterior approach, and extent of resection was classified as radical, debulking, and simple neural decompression. Adjuvant radiation therapy (RT) was also considered. Visual analog scale score for pain assessment and Medical Research Council (MRC) grade for motor weakness were used, while pre- and post-operative performance status was evaluated using the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG).
Almost all of the patients were operated using palliative surgical methods (91.3%, 21/23). Ten complications following surgery occurred and revision was performed in four patients. Of the 23 patients of this study, 22 showed significant pain relief according to their visual analogue scale scores. Concerning the aspect of neurological and functional recovery, mean MRC grade and ECOG score was significantly improved after surgery (p<0.05). In terms of survival, radiation therapy had a significant role. Median overall survival was 124 days after surgery, and the adjuvant-RT group (median 214 days) had longer survival times than prior-RT (63 days) group.
Although surgical procedure in CTJ may be difficult, we expect good clinical results by adopting a palliative posterior surgical method with appropriate preoperative preparation and postoperative treatment.
PMCID: PMC4323504
Metastatic spinal tumor; Cervicothoracic junction; Treatment
8.  Cryptococcal Brainstem Abscess Mimicking Brain Tumors in an Immunocompetent Patient 
Usually fungal infections caused by opportunistic and pathogenic fungi had been an important cause of morbidity and mortality among immunocompromised patients. However clinical data and investigations for immunocompetent pathogenic fungal infections had been rare and neglected into clinical studies. Especially Cryptococcal brainstem abscess cases mimicking brain tumors were also much more rare. So we report this unusual case. This 47-year-old man presented with a history of progressively worsening headache and nausea for 1 month and several days of vomituritions before admission. Neurological and laboratory examinations performed demonstrated no abnormal findings. Previously he was healthy and did not have any significant medical illnesses. A CT and MRI scan revealed enhancing 1.8×1.7×2.0 cm mass lesion in the left pons having central necrosis and peripheral edema compressing the fourth ventricle. And also positron emission tomogram scan demonstrated a hot uptake of fluoro-deoxy-glucose on the brainstem lesion without any evidences of systemic metastasis. Gross total mass resection was achieved with lateral suboccipital approach with neuronavigation system. Postoperatively he recovered without any neurological deficits. Pathologic report confirmed Cryptococcus neoformans and he was successively treated with antifungal medications. This is a previously unreported rare case of brainstem Cryptococcal abscess mimicking brain tumors in immunocompetent host without having any apparent typical meningeal symptoms and signs with resultant good neurosurgical recovery.
PMCID: PMC4323505
Brainstem abscess mimicking brain tumors; Cryptococcus; Immunocompetent
9.  Transcranial Direct Middle Meningeal Artery Puncture for the Onyx Embolization of Dural Arteriovenous Fistula Involving the Superior Sagittal Sinus 
A 66-year-old woman presented with intermittent paraparesis and generalized tonic-clonic seizure. Cerebral angiography demonstrated dural arteriovenous fistula (AVF) involving superior sagittal sinus (SSS), which was associated with SSS occlusion on the posterior one third. The dural AVF was fed by bilateral middle meningeal arteries (MMAs), superficial temporal arteries (STAs) and occipital arteries with marked retrograde cortical venous reflux. Transfemoral arterial Onyx embolization was performed through right MMA and STA, but it was not successful, which resulted in partial obliteration of dural AVF because of tortuous MMA preventing the microcatheter from reaching the fistula closely enough. Second procedure was performed through left MMA accessed by direct MMA puncture following small decortications of cranium overlying the MMA using diamond drill one week later. Microcatheter could be located far distally to the fistula through 5 F sheath placed into the MMA and complete obliteration of dural AVF was achieved using 3.9 cc of Onyx.
PMCID: PMC4323506
Dural arteriovenous fistula; Superior sagittal sinus; Transcranial; Middle meningeal artery; Onyx embolization
10.  Intraorbital Encephalocele Presenting with Exophthalmos and Orbital Dystopia : CT and MRI Findings 
A 15-year-old female patient with progressive pulsatile exophthalmos caused by intraorbital encephalocele was evaluated with computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in our clinic. She had no history of trauma or reconstructive surgery. When she was a little girl, she had undergone surgery for congenital glaucoma on the right eye. On the three-dimensional image of CT, a hypoplasic bone defect was observed in the greater wing of the right sphenoid bone. MRI and CT scan showed herniation through this defect of the arachnoid membrane and protruded cerebral tissue into the right orbita. Intraorbital encephalocele is an important entity that can cause pulsatile exophthalmos and blindness.
PMCID: PMC4323507
Intraorbital encephalocele; 3-dimensional CT; MRI
11.  The Neuromodulation of Neuropathic Pain by Measuring Pain Response Rate and Pain Response Duration in Animal 
Neuropathic pain causes patients feel indescribable pain. Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is one of the treatment methods in neuropathic pain but the action mechanism is still unclear. To study the effect and mechanism of analgesic effects from DBS in neuropathic pain and to enhance the analgesic effect of DBS, we stimulated the ventral posterolateral nucleus (VPL) in rats.
To observe the effect from VPL stimulation, we established 3 groups : normal group (Normal group), neuropathic pain group (Pain group) and neuropathic pain+DBS group (DBS group). Rats in DBS group subjected to electrical stimulation and the target is VPL.
We observed the behavioral changes by DBS in VPL (VPL-DBS) on neuropathic pain rats. In our study, the pain score which is by conventional test method was effectively decreased. In specific, the time of showing withdrawal response from painful stimulation which is not used measuring method in our animal model was also decreased by DBS.
The VPL is an effective target on pain modulation. Specifically we could demonstrate changes of pain response duration which is not used, and it was also significantly meaningful. We thought that this study would be helpful in understanding the relation between VPL-DBS and neuropathic pain.
PMCID: PMC4323508
Neuropathic pain; Deep brain stimulation; Ventral poterolateral nucleus; Neuromodulation
12.  Radicular Pain due to Subsidence of the Nitinol Shape Memory Loop for Stabilization after Lumbar Decompressive Laminectomy 
A number of dynamic stabilization systems have been used to overcome the problems associated with spinal fusion with rigid fixation recently and the demand for an ideal dynamic stabilization system is greater for younger patients with multisegment disc degeneration. Nitinol, a shape memory alloy of nickel and titanium, is flexible at low temperatures and regains its original shape when heated, and the Nitinol shape memory loop (SML) implant has been used as a posterior tension band mostly in decompressive laminectomy cases because the Nitinol implant has various characteristics such as high elasticity and a tensile force, flexibility, and biological compatibility. The reported short-term outcomes of the application of SMLs as posterior column supporters in cervical and lumbar decompressive laminectomies seem to be positive, and complications are minimal except for the rare occurrence of pullout and fracture of the SML. However, there was no report of neurological complications related to neural compression in spite of the use of the loop of SML in the epidural space. The authors report a case of delayed development of radiating pain caused by subsidence of the SML resulting epidural compression.
PMCID: PMC4323509
Dynamic stabilization; Laminectomy; Nitinol; Pain; Shape memory loop
13.  Thoracic Extraosseous Epidural Cavernous Hemangioma 
Cavernous hemangiomas were first reported in 1929 by Globus and Doshay, and are defined as benign vascular structures developed between the neural tissues occurring in the central nervous system, consisting of a dilated vascular bed. Cavernous hemangiomas comprise nearly 5-12% of all spinal vascular malformations; however, existence in the epidural space without bone involvement is rare. Only 4% of all cavernous hemangiomas (0.22/1.000.000) are purely epidural cavernous hemangiomas. In this case report, we removed a hemorrhagic thoracic mass presenting with progressive neurological deficits in a 55-year-old male patient. We found this case to be appropriate for presentation due to the rare occurrence of this type of cavernous hemangioma.
PMCID: PMC4323510
Cavernous hemangioma; Extraosseous-epidural; Thoracic vertebrae; Hemangioma
14.  Hydrocephalus due to Membranous Obstruction of Magendie's Foramen 
We report a case of non communicating hydrocephalus due to membranous obstruction of Magendie's foramen. A 37-year-old woman presented with intracranial hypertension symptoms caused by the occlusion of Magendie's foramen by a membrane probably due to arachnoiditis. As far as the patient's past medical history is concerned, an Epstein-Barr virus infectious mononucleosis was described. Fundoscopic examination revealed bilateral papilledema. Brain magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated a significant ventricular dilatation of all ventricles and turbulent flow of cerebelospinal fluid (CSF) in the fourth ventricle as well as back flow of CSF through the Monro's foramen to the lateral ventricles. The patient underwent a suboccipital craniotomy with C1 laminectomy. An occlusion of Magendie's foramen by a thickened membrane was recognized and it was incised and removed. We confirm the existence of hydrocephalus caused by fourth ventricle outflow obstruction by a membrane. The nature of this rare entity is difficult to demonstrate because of the complex morphology of the fourth ventricle. Treatment with surgical exploration and incision of the thickened membrane proved to be a reliable method of treatment without the necessity of endoscopic third ventriculostomy or catheter placement.
PMCID: PMC4323511
Hydrocephalus; Magendie's foramen; Arachnoiditis; Obstruction
15.  A New Measure for Monitoring Intraoperative Somatosensory Evoked Potentials 
To propose a new measure for effective monitoring of intraoperative somatosensory evoked potentials (SEP) and to validate the feasibility of this measure for evoked potentials (EP) and single trials with a retrospective data analysis study.
The proposed new measure (hereafter, a slope-measure) was defined as the relative slope of the amplitude and latency at each EP peak compared to the baseline value, which is sensitive to the change in the amplitude and latency simultaneously. We used the slope-measure for EP and single trials and compared the significant change detection time with that of the conventional peak-to-peak method. When applied to single trials, each single trial signal was processed with optimal filters before using the slope-measure. In this retrospective data analysis, 7 patients who underwent cerebral aneurysm clipping surgery for unruptured aneurysm middle cerebral artery (MCA) bifurcation were included.
We found that this simple slope-measure has a detection time that is as early or earlier than that of the conventional method; furthermore, using the slope-measure in optimally filtered single trials provides warning signs earlier than that of the conventional method during MCA clipping surgery.
Our results have confirmed the feasibility of the slope-measure for intraoperative SEP monitoring. This is a novel study that provides a useful measure for either EP or single trials in intraoperative SEP monitoring.
PMCID: PMC4303719  PMID: 25628803
Intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring; Somatosensory evoked potentials; Slope-measure; Single trials; Temporary clipping
16.  Unexpected Detachment of Solitaire Stents during Mechanical Thrombectomy 
Unexpected Solitaire stent detachment can occur during mechanical Solitaire thrombectomy. The purpose of this study was to retrospectively evaluate the influencing factors causing unexpected Solitaire stent detachment and the clinical outcomes.
Between October 2011 to December 2013, 232 cases of mechanical Solitaire thrombectomy for acute ischemic stroke were performed in 3 stroke centers. During this period, we encountered unexpected Solitaire stent detachments during mechanical Solitaire thrombectomies in 9 cases.
Solitaire stents unexpectedly detached in 9 cases (3.9%) during the retrieval of Solitaire stents. The median patient age was 76 years. The occlusion sites of the unexpected stent detachment were the proximal middle cerebral artery (MCA) in 7 cases and the internal carotid artery in 2 cases. The sizes of the stents that unexpectedly detached were 6×30 mm in 7 cases, 5×30 mm in 1 case, and 4×20 mm in 1 case. Four patients had unexpected detachment at the first retrieval, 1 patient at the second, 3 patients at the third, and 1 patient at the fifth. In all of the cases of unexpected detachment at the first retrieval, the stent deployment site was the proximal MCA. After detachment, a proximal marker of the Solitaire stent was observed in 3 patients. However, no marker was visible in the remaining 6 patients.
Unexpected Solitaire stent detachment should be considered in the first instance of stent retrieval for a relatively large-diameter stent, especially in elderly patients with MCA occlusions.
PMCID: PMC4303720  PMID: 25628804
Stroke; Thrombectomy; Stents
17.  Comparison of Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion with Direct Lumbar Interbody Fusion: Clinical and Radiological Results 
The use of direct lumbar interbody fusion (DLIF) has gradually increased; however, no studies have directly compared DLIF and transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF). We compared DLIF and TLIF on the basis of clinical and radiological outcomes.
A retrospective review was performed on the medical records and radiographs of 98 and 81 patients who underwent TLIF and DLIF between January 2011 and December 2012. Clinical outcomes were compared with a visual analog scale (VAS) and the Oswestry disability index (ODI). The preoperative and postoperative disc heights, segmental sagittal/coronal angles, and lumbar lordosis were measured on radiographs. Fusion rates, operative time, estimated blood loss (EBL), length of hospital stay, and complications were assessed.
DLIF was superior to TLIF regarding its ability to restore disc height, foraminal height, and coronal balance (p<0.001). As the extent of surgical level increased, DLIF displayed significant advantages over TLIF considering the operative time and EBL. However, fusion rates at 12 months post-operation were lower for DLIF (87.8%) than for TLIF (98.1%) (p=0.007). The changes of VAS and ODI between the TLIF and DLIF were not significantly different (p>0.05).
Both DLIF and TLIF are less invasive and thus good surgical options for treating degenerative lumber diseases. DLIF has higher potential in increasing neural foramina and correcting coronal balance, and involves a shorter operative time and reduced EBL, in comparison with TLIF. However, DLIF displayed a lower fusion rate than TLIF, and caused complications related to the transpsoas approach.
PMCID: PMC4303721  PMID: 25628805
Transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion; Direct lumbar interbody fusion; Segmental balance; Coronal balance; Fusion rate
18.  Anatomic Feasibility of Posterior Cervical Pedicle Screw Placement in Children: Computerized Tomographic Analysis of Children Under 10 Years Old 
To evaluate the anatomical feasibility of 3.5 mm screw into the cervical spine in the pediatric population and to establish useful guidelines for their placement.
A total of 37 cervical spine computerized tomography scans (24 boys and 13 girls) were included in this study. All patients were younger than 10 years of age at the time of evaluation for the period of 2007-2011.
For the C1 screw placement, entry point height (EPH) was the most restrictive factor (47.3% patients were larger than 3.5 mm). All C2 lamina had a height larger than 3.5 mm and 68.8% (51/74) of C2 lamina had a width thicker than 3.5 mm. For C2 pedicle width, 55.4% (41/74) of cases were larger than 3.5 mm, while 58.1% (43/74) of pedicle heights were larger than 3.5 mm. For pedicle width of subaxial spine, 75.7% (C3), 73% (C4), 82.4% (C5), 89.2% (C6), and 98.1% (C7, 1/54) were greater than 3.5 mm. Mean lamina width of subaxial cervical spine was 3.1 (C3), 2.7 (C4), 2.9 (C5), 3.8 (C6), and 4.0 mm (C7), respectively. Only 34.6% (127/370) of subaxial (C3-7) lamina thickness were greater than 3.5 mm. Mean length of lateral mass for the lateral mass screw placement was 9.28 (C3), 9.08 (C4), 8.81 (C5), 8.98 (C6), and 10.38 mm (C7).
C1 lateral mass fixation could be limited by the morphometrics of lateral mass height. C2 trans-lamina approach is preferable to C2 pedicle screw fixation. In subaxial spines, pedicle screw placement was preferable to trans-lamina screw placement, except at C7.
PMCID: PMC4303722  PMID: 25628806
Anatomical morphometrics; Cervical spine; Pediatric population; Screw placement
19.  Chronic Low Back Pain in Young Korean Urban Males: The Life-Time Prevalence and Its Impact on Health Related Quality of Life 
We assessed the life-time prevalence (LTP) of chronic low back pain (LBP) in young Korean males. We also evaluated the relationship between lumbar spinal lesions and their health related quality-of-life (HRQOL).
A cross-sectional, self-reported survey was conducted in Korean males (aged 19-year-old) who underwent physical examinations for the conscript. We examined 3331 examinees in November 2014. We included 2411 subjects, who accepted to participate this study without any comorbidities. We interviewed using simple binary questions for their LBP experience and chronicity. HRQOL was assessed by Short-Form Health-Survey-36 (SF-36) in chronic LBP and healthy control groups. Radiological assessment was performed in chronic LBP group to determine whether there were any pathological causes of their symptoms.
The LTP of chronic LBP was 13.4%. Most (71.7%) of them didn't have any lumbar spinal lesions (i.e., non-specific chronic LBP). The SF-36 subscale and summary scores were significantly lower in subjects with chronic LBP. Between specific and non-specific chronic LBP group, all physical and mental subscale scores were significantly lower in specific chronic LBP group, except mental health (MH) subscale score. In MH subscale and mental component summary score, statistical significant differences didn't appear between two groups (p=0.154, 0.126).
In Korean males 19 years of age, the LTP of chronic LBP was 13.4%, and more than two-thirds were non-specific chronic LBP. Chronic LBP had a significant impact on HRQOL. The presence of lumbar spinal pathoanatomical lesions affected mainly on the physical aspect of HRQOL. It influenced little on the mental health.
PMCID: PMC4303723  PMID: 25628807
Chronic low back pain; Public health; Quality of life; Health surveys
20.  Cortical Neuronal Loss after Chronic Prenatal Hypoxia: A Comparative Laboratory Study 
The purpose of this study was to investigate the prenatal hypoxic effect on the fetal brain development.
We used the guinea pig chronic placental insufficiency model to investigate the effect of hypoxia on fetal brain development. We ligated unilateral uterine artery at 30-32 days of gestation (dg : with term defined as -67 dg). At 50 dg, 60 dg, fetuses were sacrificed and assigned to either the growth-restricted (GR) or control (no ligation) group. After fixation, dissection, and sectioning of cerebral tissue from these animals, immunohistochemistry was performed with NeuN antibody, which is a mature neuronal marker in the cerebral cortex.
The number of NeuN-immunoreactive (IR) cells in the cerebral cortex did not differ between the GR and control groups at 50 dg. However, the number of NeuN-IR cells was lesser in GR fetuses than in controls at 60 dg (p<0.05).
These findings show that chronic prenatal hypoxia affect the number of neuron in the cerebral cortex of guinea pig fetus at 60 dg. The approach used in this study is helpful for extending our understanding of neurogenesis in the cerebral cortex, and the findings may be useful for elucidating the brain injury caused by prenatal hypoxia.
PMCID: PMC4303724  PMID: 25628808
Hypoxia; Cerebral cortex; Neuron
21.  Endovascular Embolization of a Ruptured Distal Lenticulostriate Artery Aneurysm in Patients with Moyamoya Disease 
A ruptured distal lenticulostriate artery (LSA) aneurysm is detected occasionally in moyamoya disease (MMD) patients presented with intracerebral hemorrhage. If the aneurysm is detected in hemorrhage site on angiographic evaluation, its obliteration could be considered, because it rebleeds frequently, and is associated with poorer outcome and mortality in MMD related hemorrhage. In this case report, the authors present two MMD cases with ruptured distal LSA aneurysm treated by endovascular embolization.
PMCID: PMC4303725  PMID: 25628809
Moyamoya disease; Cerebral hemorrhage; Therapeutic embolization
22.  Use of the Sundt Clip Graft in a Previously Coiled Internal Carotid Artery Blister-Like Aneurysm 
Owing to the focal wall defect covered with thin fibrous tissues, an aneurysm arising from the dorsal wall of the internal carotid artery (ICA) is difficult to manage either surgically or endovascularly and is often associated with high morbidity and mortality. Unfortunately, the definitive treatment modality of such highly risky aneurysm has not yet been demonstrated. Upon encountering the complex intracranial pathophysiology of such a highly precarious aneurysm, a neurosurgeon would be faced with a challenge to decide on an optimal approach. This is a case of multiple paraclinoid aneurysms including the ICA dorsal wall aneurysm, presented with spontaneous subarachnoid hemorrhage. With respect to treatment, direct clipping with a Sundt graft clip was performed after multiple endovascular interventions had failed. This surgical approach can be a treatment modality for a blood blister-like aneurysm after failed endovascular intervention(s).
PMCID: PMC4303726  PMID: 25628810
Blood blister-like aneurysm; Endovascular intervention; ICA dorsal wall aneurysm; Multiple paraclinoid aneurysms and Sundt clip graft
23.  Blood Blister-Like Aneurysm with Rupture Point Close to Origin of Anterior Choroidal Artery 
If a ruptured blood blister-like aneurysm (BBA) arises from the lateral or superolateral wall of the internal carotid artery (ICA) at the level of the anterior choroidal artery (AChA), its proximity to the origin of the AChA presents a serious surgical challenge to preserve the patency of the AChA. Two such rare cases are presented, along with successful surgical techniques, including the application of a C-shaped aneurysm clip parallel to the ICA and a microsuture technique to repair the arterial defect. The patency of the AChA and ICA was successfully preserved without recurrence or rebleeding of the BBA during a 1-year follow-up after the operation.
PMCID: PMC4303727  PMID: 25628811
Anterior choroidal artery; Blood blister-like aneurysm; Surgical technique
24.  Primary Malignant Melanoma in the Pineal Region 
A 59-year-old male patient had 5-month history of gait disturbance and memory impairment. His initial brain computed tomography scan showed 3.5×2.8 cm sized mass with high density in the pineal region. The tumor was hypointense on T2 weighted magnetic resonance images and hyperintense on T1 weighted magnetic resonance images with heterogenous enhancement of central portion. The tumor was totally removed via the occipital transtentorial approach. Black mass was observed in the operation field, and after surgery, histopathological examination confirmed the diagnosis of malignant melanoma. Whole spine magnetic resonance images and whole body 18-fluoro-deoxyglucose positron emission tomography could not demonstrate the primary site of this melanoma. Scrupulous physical examination of his skin and mucosa was done and dark pigmented lesion on his left leg was found, but additional studies including magnetic resonance images and skin biopsy showed negative finding. As a result, final diagnosis of primary pineal malignant melanoma was made. He underwent treatment with the whole brain radiotherapy and extended local boost irradiation without chemotherapy. His preoperative symptoms were disappeared, and no other specific neurological deficits were founded. His follow-up image studies showed no recurrence or distant metastasis until 26 weeks after surgery. Primary pineal malignant melanomas are extremely rare intracranial tumors, and only 17 cases have been reported since 1899. The most recent case report showed favorable outcome by subtotal tumor resection followed by whole brain and extended local irradiation without chemotherapy. Our case is another result to prove that total tumor resection with radiotherapy can be the current optimal treatment for primary malignant melanoma in the pineal region.
PMCID: PMC4303728  PMID: 25628812
Primary melanoma; Pineal melanoma; Malignant melanoma
25.  Primary Osteolytic Intraosseous Atypical Meningioma with Soft Tissue and Dural Invasion: Report of a Case and Review of Literatures 
Primary intraosseous meningioma is a rare tumor, and atypical pathologic components both osteolytic lesion and dura and soft tissue invasion is extremely rare. A 65-year-old woman presented with a 5-month history of a soft mass on the right frontal area. MR imaging revealed a 4 cm sized, multilobulated, strongly-enhancing lesion on the right frontal bone, and CT showed a destructive skull lesion. The mass was adhered tightly to the scalp and dura mater, and it extended to some part of the outer and inner dural layers without brain invasion. The extradural mass and soft tissue mass were totally removed simultaneously and we reconstructed the calvarial defect with artificial bone material. The pathological study revealed an atypical meningioma as World Health Organization grade II. Six months after the operation, brain MR imaging showed that not found recurrence in both cranial and spinal lesion. Here, we report a case of primary osteolytic intraosseous atypical meningioma with soft tissue and dural invasion.
PMCID: PMC4303729  PMID: 25628813
Atypical; Intraosseous; Meningioma; Osteolysis

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