Management of pediatric brainstem cavernous malformations: experience over 20 years at the hospital for sick children.
ABSTRACT Because of their location and biological behavior, brainstem cavernous malformations (CMs) pose a formidable clinical challenge to the neurosurgeon. The optimal management of these lesions requires considerable neurosurgical judgment. Accordingly, the authors reviewed their experience with the management of pediatric brainstem CMs at the Hospital for Sick Children.
The authors performed a retrospective chart review of pediatric patients who had received diagnoses of a brainstem CM at the Hospital for Sick Children over the past 20 years.
Twenty patients were diagnosed with brainstem CMs. The mean age at diagnosis was 10.1 +/- 5.4 years, and the patients included 13 boys and 7 girls. The mean maximal diameter of the CM was 14.3 +/- 11.2 mm. The lesions were evenly distributed on the right and left sides of the brainstem with 4 midbrain, 13 pontine, and 3 medullary lesions. Seven patients underwent surgery for the management of their CMs, with a mean age at presentation of 5.2 years, and a mean CM size of 21.0 mm. Of note from the surgical group, 2 patients had a family history of CMs, 2 lesions were medullary, the CM reached a pial surface in 6 of 7 patients, and 6 of 7 lesions were located on the right side. The mean age at presentation among the 13 patients in the nonsurgical group was 12.7 years, and the mean CM size was 10.6 mm. Seven of these patients had a prior history of radiation for tumor, and only 3 had lesions that reached a pial surface.
The management of brainstem CMs in children is influenced by multiple factors. The majority of patients received conservative management and tended to be asymptomatic with smaller lesions. Patients with larger lesions and direct pial contact, in whom symptoms arose at a younger age were more likely to undergo surgical management. A history of familial CM was also a predictor for receiving surgical treatment. No patients with a prior history of radiation therapy underwent surgery for CMs. The presence of multiple lesions seemed to have no impact on the type of management chosen. Patients who underwent surgery did suffer morbidity related to the procedure, and tended to improve clinically over time. Conservative management was associated with new deficits arising in children, some of which improved with time. Consideration of many clinical and radiological parameters is thus prudent when managing the care of children with brainstem CMs.
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ABSTRACT: Brainstem cavernous malformations (BSCMs) are believed to compose 9% to 35% of all cerebral cavernous malformations, but these lesions have been reported in children in very limited numbers. To review surgical outcomes of pediatric patients with BSCMs treated at 1 institution. We retrospectively analyzed the course of 40 pediatric patients (19 males, 21 females; age range, 10 months to 18.9 years; mean, 12.3 years) who underwent surgery between 1984 and 2009. Age, sex, presenting symptoms, location of lesion, surgical approach, new postoperative deficits, Glasgow Outcome Scale score, recurrences, and resolution of baseline symptoms were recorded. Thirty-nine patients experienced hemorrhage before surgery. Lesion locations included the pons (n=22), midbrain (n=4), midbrain and thalamus (n=4), pontomesencephalic junction (n=3), medulla (n=3), pontomedullary junction (n=3), and cervicomedullary junction (n=1). Mean lesion size was 2.3 cm. Mean length of hospital stay was 10.7 days. The average clinical follow-up was 31.9 months in 36 patients with follow-up after discharge. At last follow-up, 5 patients had experienced symptoms and/or imaging consistent with rehemorrhage, either from a residual that enlarged or true recurrence (5.25% annual rebleed risk per patient after surgery); 2 required reoperation for further resection of cavernoma. Mean Glasgow Outcome Scale score was 4.2 on admission, 4.05 at discharge, and 4.5 at latest follow-up. Preoperative symptoms and deficits improved in 16 patients (40%). New neurological deficits developed in 19 patients (48%) and resolved in 9, leaving 10 patients (25%) with new permanent deficit. Compared with adults, pediatric patients with BCSMs tend to have larger lesions and higher rates of recurrence (regrowth of residual lesion). Given the greater life expectancy of children, surgical treatment seems warranted in those with surgically accessible lesions that have bled. Outcomes were similar to those in our adult series of patients with BSCMs.Neurosurgery 12/2010; 67(6):1589-98; discussion 1598-9. DOI:10.1227/NEU.0b013e3181f8d1b2 · 3.03 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We report the case of a 31-year-old male who presented to the ER with a 1-week history of progressively worsening, throbbing, left retro-orbital headache, ptosis, and subjective worsening of short-term memory function. Initial review of systems and laboratory data were noncontributory. Non-contrasted CT demonstrated a large hyperdense mass centered in the suprasellar cistern without evidence of dissecting extra-axial hemorrhage. Though the initial appearance mimicked a basilar tip aneurysm or another primary extra-axial suprasellar pathology such as a hemorrhagic or proteinaceous craniopharyngioma, germinoma, or optic glioma, a second smaller, clearly intra-axial, hyperdense lesion was observed in the left periventricular forceps major white matter. Consideration for multiple cavernomas versus hypervascular metastatic disease such as renal malignancy, thyroid malignancy, or melanoma was raised. CTA confirmed normal intracranial vasculature. Subsequent MRI images showed an acutely hemorrhagic mass centered at the left paramedian hypothalamus and tuber cinereum with numerous secondary foci, demonstrating mature hemorrhagic elements and confirming the diagnosis of multiple cavernomas.Emergency Radiology 02/2011; 18(4):363-7. DOI:10.1007/s10140-011-0940-0
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ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to describe the clinical features and to evaluate the surgical treatment outcomes of pediatric patients with cerebral cavernous malformations (CCM). We investigated 85 children (53 boys and 32 girls), aged from 6 months to 17.9 years with CCM. Seizures and symptomatic hemorrhages, which were the most frequent symptoms, occurred in 81 patients. Nine patients had a positive family history of CCM. Eighty patients underwent microsurgical treatment after strict operative indications were met. Neuronavigation, combined with intraoperative ultrasonography or functional MRI, was used for precise localization of the lesions. The principles of minimally invasive techniques were followed during surgery. A total of 89 lesions were removed in 80 patients, and there were no deaths. During their hospital stay, only nine patients suffered from postoperative seizures, which were controlled with medication. Postoperative neurological deficits improved in 27 patients, were unchanged in nine, and worsened in two. With the help of advanced neuroimaging, a satisfactory surgical outcome was achieved for 10 lesions located in eloquent brain areas and four lesions in the brain stem. A follow-up study of 66 patients showed that all of these patients remained seizure-free, and nine patients with postoperative neurological deficits gradually recovered. Microsurgical treatment should be performed early for pediatric patients with CCM. Accurate localization of the lesions and the use of minimally invasive techniques and functional MRI monitoring were the key features of the surgical procedures.Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 07/2011; 18(10):1303-7. DOI:10.1016/j.jocn.2011.01.033 · 1.32 Impact Factor