Clinical Neuroscience

[Surgical treament of sacro-coccygeal chordoma]

VARGA Péter Pál

FEBRUARY 20, 2003

Clinical Neuroscience - 2003;56(01-02)

[Chordoma is an uncommon malignant tumor with unusual characteristics developing in the remnants of the notochord and usually manifesting itself in patients in their forties and fifties. It is usually located in the body's symmetrical axis or attached to it. The pathological structure is rather characteristic to benign tumors. Although not painful, it is a mercilessly aggressive local tumor, in some cases resulting metastatic progression and might alter its histological picture in longlived patients. It is found most prevalently (about 60 percent) in the sacrococcygeal region and at the clivus and manifesting itself spinally (over the sacrum) most likely in the lumbar region. Between 1992 and 2002, the authors have treated surgically 37 patients with sacrococcygeal chordoma. They applied wide resection following which only seven patients required re-operation. They show detailed data regarding this patient group and discuss the technical aspects of the wide tumorresection.]



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Clinical Neuroscience


Clinical Neuroscience

[Primary intramedullary glioblastoma multiforme of the spinal cord: report of eight cases]

BANCZEROWSKI Péter, SIMÓ Magdolna, SIPOS László, SLOWIK Felícia, BENOIST György, VERES Róbert

[Primary glioblastoma multiforme located intramedullary in the spinal cord is a very rare entity. The authors report eight cases and discuss the clinical features, the possibility of diagnosis, combinated treatment and pathomorphological signs focusing on the relevant literature and their experience.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[The role of reconstructive surgery for upper limbs in the rehabilitation of tetraplegia (case report)]


[As part of the rehabilitation of tetraplegical patients, movement improving operations have been carried out for more than 30 years. The scant results of the early 70's caused such a standstill and division among professionals, that operations on the upper limbs on tetraplegical patients became questionable. The authors started operating upper limb reconstructions on tetraplegia patients for achieving a basic hand function i.e. keypinch, grasping etc. in 2001. Three cases are quoted and one of them, operated ten months ago is described in details. The postoperative treatment of the other two patients has not finished yet. In 1998, a twenty-three years old girl had her fifth and sixth cervical vertebra broken in a car accident. The rugged break of the fifth vertebral body damaged the spinal chord. After the accident all four limbs became ataxic and a complete numbness occurred distally from the thoracic level of the chest. The patient went through a CV corpectomia, a corpus complementation, a CIV-V dissectomia and a CIV-VII ventrofixation. After the operation the movements of the upper limbs improved but those of the lower limbs did not. Her general condition stabilised after the treatments at the intensive care and the laryngological, the urological and the plastical surgery as well as the complex therapy at the rehabilitation department. She moved around in a wheelchair. After a para-coordinational treatment she was able to lift up small objects, but because of her paralysed bending and stretching finger muscles she was not able to hold heavier objects with her hands. In March 2002 a grip improving operation was carried on her dominant right hand. Twelve weeks after the operation she could lift up a weight of 2 kg and she was able to keypinch and grip with force.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Unusually located metastatic tumors of the spine]

BAZSÓ Péter, NAGY László

[Metastatic spine tumors are representing a growing number of oncological patients. In this paper the authors would like to focus on a rare type of metastatic spine tumors, the unusually located ones. Since the advent of MRI and with the progress in general oncology this formerly rare tumors became more frequently recognized. Consequently these tumors are causing a new challenge for the oncologists, neurologists and neurosurgeons as well. The aim of the authors with this paper was to raise, especially the neurologists' attention to this emerging problem.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Spinal stabilizations in our department 1989-2002]

HÁVEL János, GÖBÖL László, GÖRÖMBEY Zoltán, KISS Tibor, LAJKÓ Albert, VALÁLIK István, VIOLA Árpád, JULOW Jenő

[With the aim to compare results to those found in the literature, authors present a retrospective overview of the spinal stabilisations carried out in the Neurosurgical Department at the St. John’s Hospital, Budapest, Hungary between 1989 and 2002. This 37 bed department provides neurosurgical services to the Buda region with its one million inhabitants. Out of 156 000 injuries in total in the past 13 years, the department has dealt with 9360 neurotraumatologic cases, 560 of them suffering from spinal injuries. In parallel, non-traumatic cases were also treated for tumour, infections, degenerative diseases and for the instability of the spine. The 224 stabilised cases were classified into three groups: cervical, thoracic, lumbar. The authors enumerate the type of operation in each level and they present the number of cases belonging to each type. Septic complications occured in 2.5% of cases. Screw breaking or slackening of the implanted devices was observed in 2% of the cases. The types of spinal operations applied provide satisfactory method for controlling the problems caused by the instability the spinal trauma, degenerative and tumourous cases. These results do not diverge from those found in the literature.]

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Clinical Neuroscience

Acute bilateral drop foot as a complication of prolonged squatting due to haemorrhoid

KOKSAL Ayhan, DOGAN Burcu Vasfiye

Drop foot is defined as difficulty of dorsiflexion of the foot and ankle due to weak anterior tibial, extensor hallucis longus and extensor digitorum longus muscles. Cauda equina syndrome, local peroneal nerve damage due to trauma, nerve entrapment, compartment syndrome and tumors are common etiologies. A 32-year-old male patient was applied with difficulty in dorsiflexion of both of his toes, feet and ankles after he had squatted in toilette for 6-7 hours (because of his haemorrhoid) after intense alcohol intake 2 weeks before. Acute, partial, demyelinating lesion in head of fibula segment of peroneal nerves was diagnosed by electromyography. This case was reported since prolonged squatting is an extremely rare cause of acute bilateral peroneal neuropathy. This type of neuropathy is mostly demyelination and has good prognosis with physical therapy and mechanical devices, but surgical intervention may be required due to axonal damage. People such as workers and farmers working in the squatting position for long hours should be advised to change their position as soon as the compression symptoms (numbness, tingling) appear.

Clinical Oncology

[Thromboprophylaxis in cancer patients]


[Cancer- and chemotherapy-associated venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a serious complication in patients with malignancies. Most important questions and challenges are summarized in the review and an attempt is made to answer some of them. Epidemiology, causes of thrombophilia and risk factor analysis including thrombogenicity of both tumorous disease and chemotherapy are discussed. The following special risk groups are detailed: (a) postoperative, (b) hospitalized non-surgical patients, (c) ambulatory patients with chemotherapy, (d) tumorous patients without chemotherapy. As conclusion, most important messages of the recent guidelines for preventing and treating cancer-associated thrombosis are discussed.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Thyroid disorders during pregnancy]


[The hormones of the thyroid gland play a basic role in human reproduction and in the early development of the fetal brain, too. The frequency of hypo- and hyperthyroidism occuring in a pregnancy is between 1-2 per cent. Abnormal maternal thyroid function could result in harmful effects for both the mothers and their offsprings. An illness (gestational throphoblast disease) that is known to have an influence on the maternal thyroid function. Thyroid diseases occuring in pregnancy can result in diagnostical problems: the existing complaints and symptoms may be misdiagnosed as a consequence of pregnancy. Because of the changes in thyroid metabolism, which are typical to pregnancy, the analysis of the results of thyroid function may be difficult. Several diagnostical and therapeutical procedures (i. e. radioiodine techniques) are absolutely contraindicated during pregnancy. In the case of thyroid hormone replacement therapy one must take into consideration the continously changing maternal demand. Propylthiouracil is the choice of therapy regarding the treatment of the hyperthyreoidism during pregnancy. The incidence of thyroid cancer in pregnancy is 1 per 1000. Pregnancy itself does not appear to increase the risk of malignant tranformation or alter the course of thyroid cancer. The preferred period of the surgical intervention of the thyroid gland is the second trimester of the pregnancy. The introduction of a thyroid functional test (thyroid-stimulating hormone) as a screening method in the first trimester would be advisable in our country. Achieving this new procedure would reflect and expand a way of thinking in respect of prevention in our pregnancy care practice.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Correction of the physiological artefacts at pre-surgical clinical functional MR]

KISS Máté, GÁL Andor Viktor, KOZÁK Lajos Rudolf, MARTOS János, NAGY Zoltán

[Introduction/aim of the study - Pre-surgical functional MRI (fMRI) is an important modality of examinations before brain surgery. There are several artefacts (e.g. motion, susceptibility) which may hinder the evaluation of fMRI data. Physiological artefacts (breathing, pulsation) also affect the sensitivity and specificity of anatomical localization. The aim of this study is to demonstrate the efficiency of physiological artefact identification and removal methods for presurgical evaluation. Materials and methods - Siemens Magnetom Verio 3T MRI scanner was used to collect data. The physiological parameters (breathing, pulse) were recorded with the MRI system’s built-in devices. Data from fourteen patients - with primary brain tumour - were evaluated with SPM12 utilizing the RETROICOR/RVHR tool to detect and decrease the effect of physiological artefacts. We compared the statistical maps obtained with and without the physiological correction using the Jaccard similarity coefficient, and ROI analyses. Results - Significant differences were found in the mean ROI values (p<0.0016) and the extensions of eloquent activations (p<0.0013), when using the physiological correction (RETORICOR/RVHR) based on convolution method. On the other hand, no significant differences were found between the ROIs’ standard deviations (F=0.28). The RETROICOR/ RVHR method helps to define the precise localisation of eloquent areas (p<0.009). The number of irrelevant (non-significant) voxels were increased (p<0.001). Conclusions - Minimising of physiological artefacts in fMRI data calculations, the (RETROICOR/RVHR) method based on convolution has been successfully adapted. This algorithm could be helpful before neurosurgical intervention. The activity pattern became more reliable. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Prognostic factors of primary spinal tumors]

LAZÁRY Áron, BORS István Béla, SZÖVÉRFI Zsolt, RÓNAI Márton, VARGA Péter Pál

[Aims - Primary spinal tumors are rare diseases and there are less objective data in the international literature. We analyzed the epidemiology and clinical consequences of primary spinal tumors based on the clinical experience of the National Center for Spinal Disorders. Methods - Demographic and clinical data of 300 patients treated in our institute between 1995 and 2007 was collected retrospectively and analysed. Results - Beyond the relatively more frequent pathologies (chordoma, myeloma multiplex) we treated in our hospital some of the very rare types of tumors (spinal leiomyosarcoma, synovial sarcoma). Primary spinal tumors are most often located in the lumbosacral region causing most frequently (73%) local or radiating pain. Modern therapy of these patologies is based on the surgical intervention. Mean operation time was 130 minutes, mean blood loss was 650 ml in our pratice during these often technically challenging surgeries. We found a significant association among the operation time, the blood loss and the extension of the tumor (p<0.01). Histology (p<0.0001), severity of symptomes (p<0.05) and blood loss (p<0.05) were significantly related to mortality. Local recurrence was more than 5-fold in case of patients previously operated in another institute (p<0.0001). Conclusions - We successfully determined some significant prognostic factor on clinical behavior of primary spinal tumors performing a large scale retrospective study. Long time follow up of the patients and completion of our database with prospective data are planned for the future.]