Clinical Neuroscience



MARCH 30, 2008

Clinical Neuroscience - 2008;61(03-04)

[Objective - The conventional dorsal surgical approaches used in removal of intraspinal space-occupying lesions by unroofing the spinal canal, often result the destruction of dorsal bony structures, sacrifice the interspinosus/supraspinosus ligament complexes and stripping of the paraspinal muscles causing a pathologic biomechanical milieu may lead to spinal deformities, instability. Various less invasive techniques exist to save the integrity and to prevent the instability of the spinal column and allow removal of intraspinally located space-occupying lesions at the same time. The authors discuss the experiences with unilateral partial laminectomy approach in removal of intraspinally, mainly lateral, intra- or extradurally located pathologic lesions. Methods - The unilateral partial laminectomy, in which the laminas were preserved (hemi-semi laminectomy) was performed in 86 symptomatic patients to remove space-occupying intra- or extradurally located lesions of the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spinal canal. Symptoms were local or radicular pain, motor, sensory and vegetative disturbances. Results - Adequate surgery of the lesions located within the spinal canal was achieved in all patients using this approach. The hemi-semi laminectomy was performed at one spinal level in 68 patients, two levels in 15 and three levels in 3. The affected spine was the cervical in 16, the cervico-thoracic in 6, the thoracic in 35, the thoraco-lumbar in 10 and lumbar region in 19 cases. Histological results were as follows: 32 intradural meningeomas, 27 neurinomas, 10 ependymomas, 3 arachnoid cysts, 2 cavernomas and extradurally 4 epidural haemorrhage, 5 epidural abscesses and 3 dural vascular malformations. Conclusion - The unilateral partial laminectomy (named hemi-semi laminectomy) approach for the mainly laterally located intra- or extradural lesions, confined to one side, allow to minimize resection of and injury to tissues not directly involved in the pathologic process, while affording a safe and thorough removal of space-occupying pathologies and decompression of neural structures located in a spinal canal. Two additional advantages come from this technique in cases of misjudged level or at re-operation.]



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

[Evidence for the expression of parathyroid hormone 2 receptor in the human brainstem (in English language)]

BAGÓ G. Attila, PALKOVITS Miklós, USDIN B. Ted, SERESS László, DOBOLYI Árpád

[Background and purpose - The parathyroid hormone 2 receptor (PTH2R) is a G protein coupled receptor. Pharmacological and anatomical evidence suggests that the recently identified tuberoinfundibular peptide of 39 residues is, and parathyroid hormone and parathyroid hormone-related peptide are not, its endogenous ligand. Initial functional studies suggest that the PTH2R is involved in the regulation of viscerosensory information processing. As a first step towards clinical applications, herein we describe the presence of the PTH2R in the human brainstem. Material and methods - Total RNA was isolated from postmortem human cortical and brainstem samples for RT-PCR. Good quality RNA, as assessed on formaldehyde gel, was reverse transcribed. The combined cDNA products were used as template in PCR reactions with primer pairs specific for the human PTH2R. In addition, PTH2R immunolabelling was performed on free floating sections of the human medulla oblongata using fluorescent amplification immunochemistry. Results - Specific bands in the RT-PCR experiments and sequencing of PCR products demonstrated the expression of PTH2R mRNA in the human brainstem. A high density of PTH2R-immunoreactive fibers was found in brain regions of the medulla oblongata including the nucleus of the solitary tract, the spinal trigeminal nucleus, and the dorsal reticular nucleus of the medulla. Conclusion - Independent demonstration of the presence of PTH2R mRNA and immunoreactivity supports the specific expression of the PTH2R in the human brainstem. The distribution of PTH2R-immunoreactive fibers in viscerosensory brain regions is similar to that reported in mouse and rat suggesting a similar role of the PTH2R in human as in rodents. This finding will have important implications when experimental data obtained on the function of the TIP39-PTH2R neuromodulator system in rodents are to be utilized in human.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Prevalence of stroke/cardiovascular risk factors in rural Hungary - A cross-sectional descriptive study (in English language)]

BODO Michael, THURÓCZY György, PÁNCZÉL Gyula, SIPOS Kornél, ILIÁS Lajos, SZÕNYI Péter, BADÓ Mike Jr, NEBELLA Tamás, BÁNYÁSZ Attila, NAGY Zoltán

[A multi-faceted survey was conducted in 1992-94 to ascertain the somatic, mental and socio-economic conditions of the residents of a village in eastern Hungary. Here we report data on prevalence of somatic disorders from the survey. Objectives - a) To collect and compare prevalence of known cardiovascular disease, including stroke risk factors, in a specific population (a Hungarian village); b) to test a computer-based mass screening device ("Cerberus") designed to identify individuals in the test population at high risk for stroke; c) to compare results obtained with Cerberus with known stroke risk/cardiovascular disease factors and traditional medical records. Methods - A cross-sectional survey (546 subjects) was conducted in Csengersima in the early 1990s, using the Cerberus screening system, which includes: 1. a questionnaire addressing the risk factors for stroke/cardiovascular disease; 2. amplifiers to record the pulse waves of cerebral (rheoencephalography) and peripheral arteries, electrocardiogram and electroencephalogram. Additionally, subjects were measured for carotid stenosis by Doppler ultrasound and 12-lead electrocardiogram; they were also screened for blood cholesterol, glucose, and triglyceride levels. Findings - Prevalence of the following stroke risk factors was identified: overweight, 63.25%; sclerotic brain arteries by rheoencephalogram, 54.29%; heart disease, 37.92%; pathologic carotid flow, 34.24%; smoking, 30.55%; high blood cholesterol, 28.70%; hypertension, 27.83%; high triglyceride, 24.35%; abnormality of electrocardiogram, 20%; high glucose, 15.95%; symptoms of transient ischemic attack, 16.07%; alcohol abuse, 6.74%; and diabetes, 4.53%. Conclusion - The study demonstrates a possible model for primary cardiovascular disease/stroke prevention. The simple, noninvasive test uses the bioimpedance method of measurement. This method offers a standardizable, costeffective, practical technique for mass screenings by identifying the population at high risk for cardiovascular disturbances, especially cerebrovascular disease. In this model, the rheoencephalogram can detect cerebrovascular arteriosclerosis in the susceptibility/presymptomatic phase, earlier than the Doppler ultrasound technique. The method also provides a model for storing analog physiological signals in a computer-based medical record and the first steps of turning it into an expert system also tested.]

Clinical Neuroscience



[Objective - The aim of this study is to reveal the volumetrical changes in tumor necrosis, reactive zone and edema following low-dose rate I-125 interstitial irradiation of 20 inoperable (partially irresecable, partially inoperable) lowgrade gliomas. Methods - The volumes of the three regions on imagefused control CT/MRI images were measured for a 24- month period with 36 occasions. The delivered dose on the tumor surface (GTV) was 50-60 Gy. Dose planning and image fusion were performed with the BrainLab Target 1.19 software, mathematical and statistical computations were carried out with the Matlab Numeric Computation and Visualization software. The control images with the „triple ring” were fused with the planning images, and the isodose curves were adjusted to them. Results - Relative volumes normalized to volume of the reference dose were calculated and plotted in the time domain. The mean values of volumes were determined from the patients' measured data then a polynom was fitted to the mean values using the polynomial curve fitting method. The accuracy of our results were verified by statistical tools. Conclusions - The new polynomial prediction approach using image fusion analysis of the volume of tumor necrosis, reactive ring and edema caused by interstitial irradiation as a function of time provides valuable information for 1. selecting the best patient’s treatment option, 2. following up patient’s condition and 3. planning reirradiation or reoperation if necessary.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Risk of mental disorders, their changes and somatic consideration in rural Hungary (in English language)]

SIPOS Kornél, BODO Michael, MAY Zsolt, LENDVAI Balázs, PIROS Andrea, SPITZER Nóra, PATAKY Ilona, NAGY Zoltán, BÁNYÁSZ Attila

[Objective - Although the primary purpose of the study reported here was to identify stroke risk factors among the residents of a village in eastern Hungary, the study also included a multi-faceted survey conducted in 1992-94 to ascertain the somatic, mental and socio-economic conditions of the residents. Here we report data from the survey on prevalence of mental disorders (a cross-sectional descriptive study). Method - The screenings included the following tests administered to 535 subjects: anxiety, depression, dementia, neurosis were measured; recent medical records were compared to survey data for 330 of the same subjects. Findings - The summary of prevalence of mental disorders measured in this study was as follows: anxiety 34.7% (severe), dementia 44.68% (mild), depression 66% (mild), 15.94% (medium), 7.88% (severe), neurosis 66.73% (mild, medium, and severe). Medical records maintained by village physicians since 1960 differed from the results obtained in the present study. A treatment gap was observed between mental health treatment for neurosis, as indicated by medical records, and the diagnostic prevalence of neurosis as measured by the survey instruments: there were three times as many people diagnosed as neurotic in the survey as had been noted in village medical records. Additionally, the unique position of cerebrovascular alteration was established between the mental and somatic factors. Conclusion - The study demonstrates the successful simultaneous collection of a wide spectrum of data on somatic conditions, mental disorders, and socio-economic status of the subjects. The study showed that 1. patientcentered medical care can simultaneously address both somatic and mental factors; 2. it is possible to decrease the treatment gap in mental health; 3. there is value in systematic collection of data in order to optimize the planning of prevention, health care costs and decision making.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Emotion-related brain regions (in English language)]

SZILY Erika, KÉRI Szabolcs

[Converging data from human functional imaging in healthy subjects, neuropsychological studies of brain-damaged patients, and non-human neurophysiology indicate that emotional processing is linked to anatomically distinct and well-defined brain regions. A main characteristic of emotion-related brain regions (orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulated cortex, amygdala, insula) is their reciprocal anatomical connectivity with each other as well as with neuromodulatory systems (e.g., serotonergic dorsal raphe, cholinergic nucleus basalis of Meynert, and dopaminergic ventral tegmentum) and with other brain areas involved in sensory, motor, and cognitive functions. These structures mediate the representation of stimulus values, the affectleaden enhancement of sensory processing, and the predictions of values associated with actions in order to bias decision-making in uncertain situations. In this review, we discuss new results from the functional neuroanatomy of these brain circuits and outline their significance in the emergence of various psychopathological phenomena.]

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Clinical Neuroscience

[Removal of multiple thoracic dumbbell tumours through combined hemi-semi laminectomy and minimal invasive paraspinal approach]

PAPP Zoltán

[One third of the primary spinal tumours are neurinomas. These tumours most often located intraduralyextramedullary, but 15-25 percent of the cases, the tumour extends to the paraspinal region through the neuroforamina. Spinal manifestation of Schwann-cell tumours, usually neurofibromas, can be seen in neurofibromatosis. 31 years old female patient, suffering from NF1 was operated on with a Th 3-6 and Th 10-11 dumbbell tumours. At the first step the tumour mass, located in the spinal canal, was resected through a partial hemilaminectomy. At the second operation the extraspinal tumour was resected through a minimal invasive paraspinal approach. The author present the combined use of minimal invasive spine surgical technics and discuss the benefits and disadvantages of these approaches, compared to the standard surgical procedures.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[New minimal invasive surgical techniques in spine surgery]


[The last decade has brought significant development in spine surgery. As in all field of surgery, introduction of the minimal invasive, atraumatic procedures characterized our activities. The number of short and long-time complications were significantly reduced and the effectiveness of operations were markedly improved by the new technical conditions, for example by the use of neuronavigation, surgical microscope, intraoperative fluoroscopy, high speed drill and the widespread of keyhole concept. The applied multislice CT imaging and the high resolution MRI enabled to improve the accuracy of the planned surgical procedures and to reduce the mortality and morbidity of operations. In our studies technical methods were investigated and new developments were established in the field of minimal invasive spine surgery. The National Institute of Neurosurgery's spinal surgical team pioneers further development and application of novel minimal invasive procedures. Applied methods of vanguard surgical procedures include split laminotomy, the “archbone” technique, the “over the top” decompression, the multilevel hemi-semi laminectomy, the supraforaminal “burr hole”, the facet joint sparing “open tunnel” techniques or parasplit minimal invasive approaches. The new innovative surgical techniques are applied in our daily routine and meet international trends by utilizing benefits of minimal invasive spinal surgery. Using our newly developed innovative techniques allow to decompress neural elements in case of spinal canal stenosis and to remove the intramedullary and extramedullary space-occupying lesions located in the spinal canal and spreading extraspinally through the neuroforamen. These techniques are specially tailored to preserve structural integrity and stability of the spinal column, and allow at the same time to minimize resection of and injury to tissues not directly involved in the pathologic processes. In our studies a classification system of spatial localization of pathological lesions and processes in spinal canal was developed by us. Using this classification system enables the surgeon to select and apply the appropriate minimal invasive technique from dorsal direction and to remove the space-occupying lesions located in the spinal canal. The minimal invasive techniques were characterized and summarized. This overview of the minimal invasive techniques can be applied and recommended in the daily routine of spine surgery. We proudly employ novel surgical techniques having been developed in our institution. These techniques are internationally recognized and applied in our practice on daily basis as well.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Evaluation of the effectiveness of transforaminal epidural steroid injection in far lateral lumbar disc herniations

EVRAN Sevket, KATAR Salim

Far lateral lumbar disc herniations (FLDH) consist approximately 0.7-12% of all lumbar disc herniations. Compared to the more common central and paramedian lumbar disc herniations, they cause more severe and persistent radicular pain due to direct compression of the nerve root and dorsal root ganglion. In patients who do not respond to conservative treatments such as medical treatment and physical therapy, and have not developed neurological deficits, it is difficult to decide on surgical treatment because of the nerve root damage and spinal instability risk due to disruption of facet joint integrity. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of transforaminal epidural steroid injection (TFESI) on the improvement of both pain control and functional capacity in patients with FLDH. A total of 37 patients who had radicular pain caused by far lateral disc herniation which is visible in their lumbar magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, had no neurological deficit and did not respond to conservative treatment, were included the study. TFESI was applied to patients by preganglionic approach. Pre-treatment Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) and Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) scores of the patients were compared with the 3rd week, 3rd month and 6th month scores after the procedure. The mean initial VAS score was 8.63 ± 0.55, while it was 3.84 ± 1.66, 5.09 ± 0.85, 4.56 ± 1.66 at the 3rd week, 3rd month and 6th month controls, respectively. This decrease in the VAS score was found statistically significant (p = 0.001). ODI score with baseline mean value of 52.38 ± 6.84 was found to be 18.56 ± 4.95 at the 3rd week, 37.41 ± 14.1 at the 3rd month and 34.88 ± 14.33 at the 6th month. This downtrend of pa­tient’s ODI scores was found statistically significant (p = 0.001). This study has demonstrated that TFESI is an effective method for gaining increased functional capacity and pain control in the treatment of patients who are not suitable for surgical treatment with radicular complaints due to far lateral lumbar disc hernia.