Clinical Neuroscience

How to minimize the risk for headache? A lumbar puncture practice questionnaire study

JONATAN Salzer, RAJDA Cecilia, SUNDSTRÖM Peter, MATTIAS Vågberg, VÉCSEI László, ANDERS Svenningsson

NOVEMBER 30, 2016

Clinical Neuroscience - 2016;69(11-12)


Background - To lower the risk for post lumbar puncture (LP) headache the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) recommended using small bore atraumatic needles together with stylet reinsertion in a report from 2005. It is unclear whether these recommendations are followed or not. Objectives - To investigate the diagnostic LP preferences with respect to the AAN guidelines among neurologists by use of a short online questionnaire, and to review previously published literature on the subject. Results - A total of 284 respondents who performed diagnostic LPs completed the questionnaire. Almost half (41%) answered that they always use atraumatic needles. The most common reason (73%) for not using atraumatic needles was that these were not available. Less than half of the respondents who performed LPs had knowledge about the AAN guidelines for diagnostic LPs, and 48-76% agreed with the different recommendations therein. Five previously (1998-2015) published studies investigating LP practice among neurologists were identified. The reported frequency of atraumatic needle use (always/routinely) varied between 2 and 16%. Discussion - Atraumatic needle use was more common in this study compared with previous publications. There is still skepticism regarding some of the AAN recommendations, and needle availability appears to be the most important factor preventing atraumatic needle use. To increase the use of atraumatic needles we may perform additional studies investigating their potential benefits, and arrange training sessions for neurologists to increase their awareness and level of comfort with the atraumatic LP technique.



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

[Ketamine administration in case of severe, therapy resistant depressed patient, case report]

MORVAI Szabolcs, NAGY Attila István, BÁLINT-SZÖLLŐSI Adrienn, MÓRÉ E Csaba, BERECZ Roland, FRECSKA Ede

[Objective - In our case report we present the treatment of a female patient suffering from therapy resistant depression. This procedure is not in practice in Hungary at present, the aim of our work to reproduce the findigs of international studies in domestic circumstances. Matter - Major depression is a common, chronic and severe mental disorder, with 16.2% lifetime prevalence. Many international randomized, placebo controlled trials found administration of ketamine infusion effective in depressed patients. Methods - Since ketamine is an anesthetic agent, its administration was performed in the post-operative monitoring room of our hospital operating-room, supervised by an anesthesiologist. According to formerly published data, a dose of 0.5 mg/kg of body weight was administered intravenously in 40 minutes by perfusor. The drug was administered in a same manner fifteen days later. Subject - The patient was admitted to our inpatient ward with severe depression. During two months of combined antidepressant therapy her condition has not improved significantly. Approval for off label drug indication was granted with urgency by the National Institute of Quality and Organizational Development in Healthcare and Medicines. Results - During the two treatments the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale 21 items rating scale score was reduced to 8 from the baseline 28, the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale score was reduced to 6 from 25, Beck Depression Inventory was reduced to 9 from 20. Upon administration of the drug no severe adverse event was detected, the mild dissociative state related to ketamine was ceased in a short period of time. Discussion - With administration of 0.5 mg/kg ketamine the authors managed to achieve rapid improvement in a therapy resistant depressed patient, without permanent side effects. Our future plan is to repeat the use of the drug within a double-blind, placebo controlled trial in order to prove its efficacy in hospital settings. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Recommendation for treatment options in advanced Parkinson's disease]

ASCHERMANN Zsuzsanna, DIBÓ György, KLIVÉNYI Péter, KOVÁCS Norbert, KOVÁCS Tibor, TAKÁTS Annamária, GERTRÚD Tamás, VARANNAI Lajos

[The treatment of advanced Parkinson’s disease is challenging for both physicians and caregivers. The device-aided therapies need expertise and dedicated hospital centers. In this summary we have concluded the available data and recommendation for the treatment options in advanced Parkinson’s disease and adopt them to the daily care in Hungary. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

[The role of zonisamide in the treatment of women with epilepsy]


[The antiepileptic drugs can effect fertility, development of gynecological diseases and occurence of sexual problems. They can cause a number of “cosmetic” problem and also influence the selection of safe contraceptive method. Many antiepileptic drugs can cause congenital malformations or affect the new-born child’s psychomotor and cognitive development, therefore during pregnancy should be treated with extreme caution in women with epilepsy. Most types of epilepsies accompany the patient through their whole life. Women spend almost the third of their lives after menopause and - due to the formation of associated diseases as well - this period is also special. According to the 2013 recommendation of International League Epilepsy (ILAE), zonisamide is one of the first-line antiepileptic drugs in focal epilepsy. In my review I discuss women’s epilepsy in the viewpoint of the application of zonisamid. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

Vitreous humor diffusion measurements from diffusionweighted imaging in idiopathic intracranial hypertension

CAGLI Bekir, TUNCEL Alpaslan Sedat, YILMAZ Erdem, TEKATAS Aslan, ERMIS Veli

Background - Idiopathic intracranial hypertension is a disease with uncertain etiology. It is not caused by an intracranial mass lesion or hydrocephalus and is characterized by abnormal elevation of intracranial pressure and normal composition of the cerebrospinal fluid. The orbita and intracranial area are closely related anatomically. Elevated intracranial pressure can be transmitted to the orbita through the cerebrospinal fluid around the optic nerve sheath changes at the vitreous humor on diffusion-weighted imaging have not been systemically studied in idiopathic intracranial hypertension. Purpose - The purpose of this study was to investigate diffusion changes in the vitreous humor in patients with intracranial hypertension. Methods - In this retrospective study, 25 patients with papilledema and who had been definitively diagnosed with idiopathic intracranial hypertension and 20 control participants were evaluated. Control subjects and patients were scanned with a 1.5 Tesla magnetic resonance imaging. Apparent diffusion coefficient maps were obtained from diffusion-weighted imaging with a b value of 1000 s/mm2 and apparent diffusion coefficient values were automatically calculated. These images were obtained by a radiologist who was blinded to the details of the study for center of each vitreous humor and the body of lateral ventricle. The mean apparent diffusion coefficient values of each vitreous humor and the body of the lateral ventricle were calculated for each group (control group and patients) and quantitative comparisons were performed. Results - There were no statistically significant differences in mean apparent diffusion coefficient values of the right vitreous humor, left vitreous humor and the body of the lateral ventricle between the patients with idiopathic intracranial hypertension and the control group (p=0.766, p=0.864, p=0.576, respectively). Discussion - Vitreous humor is a closed system and has no direct relationship with the cerebrospinal fluid or cerebral tissue and although morphological changes occur in the orbital structures, including the optic disk and optic nerve in idiopathic intracranial hypertension, the indirect effects of these changes on the vitreous humor may be too subtle to measure. Conclusion - We did not find a significant difference in the mean apparent diffusion coefficient value of the vitreous humor between the patients with idiopathic intracranial hypertension and the control group. However, future studies will be necessary to determine if changes in the vitreous humor can be used to diagnose intracranial hypertension.

Clinical Neuroscience

Unilateral thalamic infarction causing downward gaze palsy in a patient with uncorrected tetralogy of fallot: a case report


Introduction - Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) is the most common form of cyanotic congenital heart disease (CHD). Adults with surgically uncorrected forms of this condition are extremely rare, since operation is recommended in childhood to prevent cyanosis. Cyanotic CHD increases the risk of thromboembolic events. An endothelial dysfunction caused by chronic hypoxia and shear stress due to rheological alterations with a platelet dysfunction appear to be the explanation behind this finding. Paramedian thalamic infarction causing vertical gaze palsy without midbrain involvement is an infrequent finding. We report here a rare case of a patient with untreated TOF, who suffered a left-sided unilateral thalamic infarction presenting as downward gaze palsy and diplopia. Case presentation - A 44-year-old women complained of sudden onset diplopia and vertigo. Neurological examination revealed a downward gaze palsy with other symptoms related to a vertebrobasilar territory circulatory disturbance. The MRI scan revealed an acute infarction, 8 mm in diameter in the left medial thalamic region without midbrain involvement. Discussion - Adults with uncorrected forms of TOF are extremely uncommon, and descriptions of stroke in these patients are therefore rarities. We set out to give a concise survey of the literature regarding TOF patients with stroke. Conclusion - We present a rare case of unilateral thalamic infarction causing downward gaze palsy in an adult patient with uncorrected TOF. Cyanotic CHD is regarded as one of the risk factors of stroke. Besides other pathologic conditions, ischaemic stroke at an early age should raise the suspicion of a cardioembolic origin and, in rare cases, might result from cyanotic CHD.

All articles in the issue

Related contents

Clinical Neuroscience

[Examining the diagnostic accuracy of a new migraine screener]

CSÉPÁNY Éva, BOZSIK György, KELLERMANN István, HAJNAL Boglárka, SCHEIDL Erika, PALÁSTI Ágnes, TÓTH Marianna, GYÜRE Tamás, ERTSEY Csaba

[Background - Migraine affects more than 10% of the Hungarian population, causes significant disability and severely affects patients’ generic and condition-specific quality of life. Despite these facts, a significant proportion of patients is not diagnosed and not treated adequately. Headache centres can provide care for only a fraction of all patients. The task of primary care providers would be greatly simplified by a reliable self-administered migraine screening questionnaire. Objective - To develop a short and reliable questionnaire as a migraine screening tool. Methods - Outpatients at the Headache Service, Department of Neurology, Semmelweis University completed a self-administered questionnaire which contained 9 yes/no questions about their headaches’ characteristics. The number of ’yes’ answers (the patients’ total score) was evaluated in connection with the diagnosis based on the International Headache Society criteria. We calculated the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value as well as the misclassification rate for each total score value and used these to establish the final cutoff value of the questionnaire. 306 patients (242 females, mean age 39.1±13.3 years) were enrolled. The diagnosis was migraine in 244. Results - Completing the questionnaire did not pose any difficulty for the patients. At a cutoff value of 5 points the questionnaire’s sensitivity was 0.96 and specificity was 0.61. The positive predictive value was 0.91 and the negative predictive value was 0.81. The misclassification rate was 0.11. Discussion - Our results show that the questionnaire may help the diagnosis of migraine. In order to use it in medical practice, its further evaluation is necessary on a large representative sample of the Hungarian population.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Examining the psychometric properties of a new quality of life questionnaire in migraineurs]


[Background - The deleterious effect of primary headaches on the sufferers’ quality of life (QOL) has been abundantly documented using both generic and headache-specific instruments. The currently used questionnaires focus on a limited number of factors and therefore may not be sensitive enough to detect the effect of headache type and headache characteristics on QOL, despite the obvious clinical differences. We have devised a comprehensive questionnaire that may be more sensitive to the burden of headache. Objective - To assess the psychometric properties of the new questionnaire on a group of migraineurs. Patients and method - We studied 117 migraineurs who completed the validated Hungarian version of the SF-36 generic QOL measure and our new, 25-item questionnaire. Reliability was assessed by internal consistency, measured by Cronbach’s a of all items. Content validity was exam- ined by calculating the correlation of the items with subscales of the SF-36 measure. The correlation of the patients’ migraine characteristics with the questionnaire’s items was used to assess criterion validity. Results - The questionnaire was quick and easy to administer. The questionnaire demonstrated good reliability, with Cronbach’s alpha being 0.893. Content validity was adequate; most “physical” items of the new questionnaire showed significant correlations with the bodily pain and role physical SF-36 subscales and most “psychical” and “social” items were correlated with mental health and social functioning SF-36 subscales. Criterion validity was adequate, with headache severity being correlated with most of the items. Discussion - In this study the new headache-specific quality of life instrument showed adequate psychometric properties.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[The author’s response to the comment on “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]