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2022
Soliman, M. A. R., A. Khan, and J. Pollina, "Comparison of Prone Transpsoas and Standard Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion Surgery for Degenerative Lumbar Spine Disease: A Retrospective Radiographic Propensity Score-Matched Analysis.", World neurosurgery, vol. 157, pp. e11-e21, 2022. Abstract

BACKGROUND: Prone transpsoas lateral lumbar interbody fusion (PTP-LLIF) is a recently introduced modification to standard LLIF. To date, no study has compared the radiographic outcomes of standard LLIF and PTP-LLIF. We performed a radiographic parameter-based propensity score-matched analysis to compare postoperative clinical and radiographic outcomes between PTP-LLIF and standard LLIF for degenerative lumbar spine disease.

METHODS: A total of 30 consecutive patients met the inclusion criteria. The preoperative standing scoliosis radiographs were retrospectively reviewed for global and segmental sagittal alignment. Propensity score matching was calculated using the baseline radiographic parameters. One-to-one matching of patients who had undergone PTP-LLIF with those who had a similar propensity score but had undergone standard LLIF was performed to compare the radiographic (primary) and clinical (secondary) outcomes.

RESULTS: Propensity score matching resulted in 10 pairs of PTP-LLIF and standard LLIF patients. The PTP-LLIF group had had significantly better improvement in lumbar lordosis (P = 0.047). The difference in the improvement in pelvic incidence minus lumbar lordosis mismatch approached statistical significance for the PTP-LLIF group (P = 0.05). This led to better improvement in the short-form 12-item physical score (P = 0.03) and Oswestry disability index (P = 0.1) in the PTP-LLIF group. No significant differences were found between the 2 groups in the other clinical and radiographic outcomes. The PTP-LLIF group had a shorter operative time (P = 0.4) and hospital stay (P = 0.1), without a statistically difference, and shorter radiation exposure time (P = 0.5). The standard LLIF group had experienced less intraoperative bleeding, without a statistically significant difference (P = 0.3). The mean follow-up time was 10.2 ± 5.2 months in the PTP-LLIF group and 30.9 ± 17.2 months in the standard LLIF group (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS: The PTP-LLIF group showed significantly better improvement in lumbar lordosis and short-form 12-item physical score.

Aguirre, A. O., M. A. R. Soliman, S. Azmy, A. Khan, P. K. Jowdy, J. P. Mullin, and J. Pollina, "Incidence of major and minor vascular injuries during lateral access lumbar interbody fusion procedures: a retrospective comparative study and systematic literature review.", Neurosurgical review, vol. 45, issue 2, pp. 1275-1289, 2022. Abstract

During lateral lumbar fusion, the trajectory of implant insertion approaches the great vessels anteriorly and the segmental arteries posteriorly, which carries the risk of vascular complications. We aimed to analyze vascular injuries for potential differences between oblique lateral interbody fusion (OLIF) and lateral lumbar interbody fusion (LLIF) procedures at our institution. This was coupled with a systematic literature review of vascular complications associated with lateral lumbar fusions. A retrospective chart review was completed to identify consecutive patients who underwent lateral access fusions. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines were used for the systematic review with the search terms "vascular injury" and "lateral lumbar surgery." Of 260 procedures performed at our institution, 211 (81.2%) patients underwent an LLIF and 49 (18.8%) underwent an OLIF. There were no major vascular complications in either group in this comparative study, but there were four (1.5%) minor vascular injuries (2 LLIF, 0.95%; 2 OLIF, 4.1%). Patients who experienced vascular injury experienced a greater amount of blood loss than those who did not (227.5 ± 147.28 vs. 59.32 ± 68.30 ml) (p = 0.11). In our systematic review of 63 articles, major vascular injury occurred in 0-15.4% and minor vascular injury occurred in 0-6% of lateral lumbar fusions. The systematic review and comparative study demonstrate an increased rate of vascular injury in OLIF when compared to LLIF. However, vascular injuries in either procedure are rare, and this study aids previous literature to support the safety of both approaches.

2021
Ezzat, A. A. M., M. A. R. Soliman, M. Baraka, M. E. Shimy, A. Ezz, and E. E. L. Refaee, "Distant large acute epidural hematoma after closed cerebrospinal fluid tapping through the anterior fontanelle: A case report and its pathogenesis.", Surgical neurology international, vol. 12, pp. 59, 2021. Abstract

BACKGROUND: Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) infection is one of the most common and serious complications of shunt placement. The CSF shunt infections are preferably treated with intravenous antibiotics, infected shunt removal, repeated tapping (infants) or placement of an external ventricular drainage (EVD) device, and placement of a new shunt once the CSF is sterile. The tapping through the anterior fontanelle is commonly used instead of the EVD in developing countries to manage CSF infection in open anterior fontanelle patients. To the best of our knowledge, this would be considered the first reported case of distant epidural hematoma after closed ventricular tapping.

CASE DESCRIPTION: We report a case of 6-months child with Chiari malformation (Type II) presenting to us with a shunt infection with possible obstruction. CSF was aspirated for examination through a tap through the anterior fontanelle followed by the development of extradural hemorrhage far from the tapping site.

CONCLUSION: EDH after a transfontanellar ventricular tap can rapidly evolve and lead to patient death. This report raises the awareness of the neurosurgeons to this possible complication that can happen and leads to major complications. Monitoring the conscious level would be needed after ventricular tapping to detect this possible complication.

Khan, A., J. Z. Mao, M. A. R. Soliman, K. Rho, R. M. Hess, R. M. Reynolds, J. P. Riley, J. P. Mullin, A. H. Siddiqui, E. I. Levy, et al., "The effect of COVID-19 on trainee operative experience at a multihospital academic neurosurgical practice: A first look at case numbers.", Surgical neurology international, vol. 12, pp. 271, 2021. Abstract

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the economy, health care, and society as a whole. To prevent the spread of infection, local governments across the United States issued mandatory lockdowns and stay-at-home orders. In the surgical world, elective cases ceased to help "flatten the curve" and prevent the infection from spreading to hospital staff and patients. We explored the effect of the cancellation of these procedures on trainee operative experience at our high-volume, multihospital neurosurgical practice.

METHODS: Our department cancelled all elective cases starting March 16, 2020, and resumed elective surgical and endovascular procedures on May 11, 2020. We retrospectively reviewed case volumes for 54 days prelockdown and 54 days postlockdown to evaluate the extent of the decrease in surgical volume at our institution. Procedure data were collected and then divided into cranial, spine, functional, peripheral nerve, pediatrics, and endovascular categories.

RESULTS: Mean total cases per day in the prelockdown group were 12.26 ± 7.7, whereas in the postlockdown group, this dropped to 7.78 ± 5.5 ( = 0.01). In the spine category, mean cases per day in the prelockdown group were 3.13 ± 2.63; in the postlockdown group, this dropped to 0.96 ± 1.36 ( < 0.001). In the functional category, mean cases per day in the prelockdown group were 1.31 ± 1.51, whereas in the postlockdown group, this dropped to 0.11 ± 0.42 ( < 0.001). For cranial ( = 0.245), peripheral nerve ( = 0.16), pediatrics ( = 0.34), and endovascular ( = 0.48) cases, the volumes dropped but were not statistically significant decreases.

CONCLUSION: The impact of this outbreak on operative training does appear to be significant based solely on statistics. Although the drop in case volumes during this time can be accounted for by the pandemic, it is important to understand that this is a multifactorial effect. Further studies are needed for these results to be generalizable and to fully understand the effect this pandemic has had on trainee operative experience.

Soliman, M. A. R., A. Khan, A. O. Aguirre, N. Ruggiero, B. R. Levy, B. L. Mariotti, P. K. Jowdy, K. R. Rajjoub, R. M. Hess, Q. Zeeshan, et al., "Effectiveness and Safety of Continuous Infusion Regional Anesthesia Pumps for Pain After Thoracopelvic Fusion Surgery for Persistent Spinal Pain Syndrome.", World neurosurgery, vol. 154, pp. e815-e821, 2021. Abstract

BACKGROUND: Postoperative pain after complex revision spine surgery, especially for the treatment of persistent spinal pain syndrome (PSPS), is frequently severe and can be debilitating, requiring the use of intravenous and oral opioids. To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of a continuous infusion regional anesthesia pump placed after thoracopelvic fusion for the treatment of PSPS.

METHODS: We performed a retrospective comparative study of consecutive patients who had undergone thoracopelvic fusion for PSPS. The patients included in the present study had either had a continuous infusion regional anesthesia pump placed during surgery or had not (control). Demographics, use of preoperative and postoperative opioids, postoperative adverse events, length of hospital stay, and 90-day readmission were recorded.

RESULTS: The patients in the pump group (n = 14) had used fewer opioids during their hospital stay compared with the control group (n = 12; P = 0.6). This difference was greater for postoperative days 1 and 2 (P = 0.3 and P = 0.2, respectively). No significant difference was found in opioid usage during the first 14 days after surgery (P = 0.8) or at the 3-month postoperative follow-up evaluation (P = 0.8). Furthermore, no significant difference was found between the 2 groups in terms of postoperative complications. The pump group had a 1.4-day shorter hospital stay (P = 0.7). The control group had more 90-day readmissions than did the pump group (P = 0.2).

CONCLUSIONS: Despite showing a trend toward less usage of opioids during the first 2 days after surgery and a shorter hospital stay with no increased complications in the pump group, the study data failed to demonstrate a statistically significant difference between the two groups.

Soliman, M. A. R., A. F. Alkhamees, A. Khan, and A. Shamisa, "Instrumented Four-Level Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion: Long-Term Clinical and Radiographic Outcomes.", Neurology India, vol. 69, issue 4, pp. 937-943, 2021. Abstract

BACKGROUND: There is a paucity of data on outcomes following four-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusions (ACDFs), especially the sagittal balance (SB) parameters.

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to review the long-term clinical and radiographic outcomes for 41 consecutive patients that underwent instrumented four-level ACDF.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Records of 27 men and 14 women, aged 40-68 years, who underwent instrumented four-level ACDF and plating at C3-C7 (n = 37) or C4-T1 (n = 4) were retrospectively analyzed. Clinical outcomes that were assessed were the visual analog scale (VAS) for pain, neck disability index (NDI), Odom's criteria, improvement of symptoms, intraoperative and postoperative complications, SB, and need for revision surgery.

RESULTS: The mean follow-up was 65 ± 36.3 months. The mean VAS for arm and neck pain significantly improved from 7.7 ± 1.4 to 3.5 ± 1.7 (P < 0.001). The NDI score significantly improved from 31 ± 8.2 to 19.3 ± 8.1 (P < 0.001). Concerning Odom's criteria, the grades were excellent (14), good (17), fair (9), and poor (1). Concerning intraoperative and postoperative complications, 10 cases developed dysphagia, 3 cases developed temporary dysphonia, 2 cases developed a postoperative hematoma, 1 patient developed C5 palsy, 1 vertebral artery (VA) injury, and 1 case had superficial infection. The average length of stay (LOS) was 2.9 ± 3.7 days. Three patients needed another surgery (one adjacent segment and two posterior foraminotomies). Regarding the mean change in SB parameters, Cobb's angle (CA) (C2-C7) was 14° ± 8.3°, fusion angle (FA) was 10.9 ± 10.9°, cervical straight vertical alignment (cSVA) was 0.6 ± 0.5 cm, T1 slope was 2.3° ± 3.4°, and disc height (DH) was 1.3 ± 0.9 mm.

CONCLUSION: Instrumented four-level ACDF is safe with a satisfactory outcome and supplementary posterior fusion was not required in any case.

Soliman, M. A. R., A. Khan, J. Pollina, and J. P. Mullin, "Letter to the Editor. Meta-analysis of fluoroscopic and navigation-based cervical pedicle screw placement.", Journal of neurosurgery. Spine, pp. 1-2, 2021.
El-Ghandour, N. M. F., A. O. Aguirre, A. Goel, H. Kandeel, T. M. Ali, B. Chaurasia, S. Elmorsy, M. S. Abdelaziz, and M. A. R. Soliman, "Neurosurgical Wrong Surgical Site in Lower-Middle- or Low-Income Countries (LMICs): A Survey Study.", World neurosurgery, vol. 152, pp. e235-e240, 2021. Abstract

BACKGROUND: One of the most preventable errors of a surgeon's career is operating on the incorrect surgical site (ICSS). No study in any specialty has ever investigated the incidence of ICSS events in lower-income countries. This study focuses on identifying the occurrence of these events along with an analysis of potential causes leading to these unfortunate events.

METHODS: The authors distributed a survey to neurosurgical colleagues from around the world. These surgeons were first asked to identify details about their practice and incidence and personal experience with ICSS in their own careers. At the end of the survey, they responded to questions about their knowledge of safety checklists.

RESULTS: In this study there was a 63.4% response rate. When combined with those who participated through various social media platforms, there were 178 responses. The incidence rate for every 10,000 cases performed was found to be 22.8 in the cranial group, 88.6 in the cervical group, and 158.8 in the lumbar procedural group. This study identified that 40% of participants had never learned or experienced the ABCD time-out strategy and that 60% of surgeons did not use intraoperative navigation or imaging in their practices. The error has never been disclosed to the patient in 48% of the ICSS cases.

CONCLUSIONS: Due to a lack of application of safety checklist protocol, there is an increased occurrence of ICSS events in lower-income countries. The results of this study demonstrate the necessity of investing time and resources dedicated to avoiding preventable errors.

El-Ghandour, N. M. F., I. Lotfy, B. M. Ayoub, and M. A. R. Soliman, "Obituary for Professor Mohamed Lotfy Shehata", World Neurosurgery , vol. 156, pp. 147-148, 2021.
Haberfellner, E., M. Elbaroody, A. F. Alkhamees, A. Alaosta, S. Eaton, E. Quint, S. Shahab, A. O'Connor, J. Im, A. Khan, et al., "Primary Spinal Melanoma: Case Report and Systematic Review.", Clinical neurology and neurosurgery, vol. 205, pp. 106649, 2021. Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Primary malignant melanoma of the spinal cord (PSM) is a rare condition with limited evidence regarding its diagnosis (clinical and radiographic), management, and prognosis. Our aim was to report an extremely rare two cases of primary malignant melanoma of the spine one of them is sacral melanoma which represents the second reported case in the literature and to conduct a systematic review of the relevant literature.

METHODS: The diagnosis and management of these cases were retrospectively reviewed. Using the PRISMA guideline, we conducted a systematic review of the literature to analyze different management strategies and the prognosis of such pathology.

RESULTS: All two patients were operated on, and received gross total removal of their tumors, with extended follow up for tumor recurrences. One of the cases involved a sacral tumor, which was resected without adjuvant therapy. The other one was seen by oncology and received post-operative chemo- and radio- therapy. In addition to the aforementioned cases, we present a comprehensive review of the literature on PSM from 1950 to the present, demonstrating that PSM is a very rare tumor, with a limited counted number of cases reported worldwide.

CONCLUSION: In conclusion, we report an exceedingly rare two cases of primary malignant melanoma of the spine. Early surgical intervention is key to the management of these rare and aggressive tumors. GTR should be attempted if possible.

Haberfellner, E., M. Elbaroody, A. F. Alkhamees, A. Alaosta, S. Eaton, E. Quint, S. Shahab, A. O'Connor, J. Im, A. Khan, et al., "Primary Spinal Melanoma: Case Report and Systematic Review.", Clinical neurology and neurosurgery, vol. 205, pp. 106649, 2021. Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Primary malignant melanoma of the spinal cord (PSM) is a rare condition with limited evidence regarding its diagnosis (clinical and radiographic), management, and prognosis. Our aim was to report an extremely rare two cases of primary malignant melanoma of the spine one of them is sacral melanoma which represents the second reported case in the literature and to conduct a systematic review of the relevant literature.

METHODS: The diagnosis and management of these cases were retrospectively reviewed. Using the PRISMA guideline, we conducted a systematic review of the literature to analyze different management strategies and the prognosis of such pathology.

RESULTS: All two patients were operated on, and received gross total removal of their tumors, with extended follow up for tumor recurrences. One of the cases involved a sacral tumor, which was resected without adjuvant therapy. The other one was seen by oncology and received post-operative chemo- and radio- therapy. In addition to the aforementioned cases, we present a comprehensive review of the literature on PSM from 1950 to the present, demonstrating that PSM is a very rare tumor, with a limited counted number of cases reported worldwide.

CONCLUSION: In conclusion, we report an exceedingly rare two cases of primary malignant melanoma of the spine. Early surgical intervention is key to the management of these rare and aggressive tumors. GTR should be attempted if possible.

El-Ghandour, N. M. F., mohamed sawan, A. A. Abdelkhalek, T. Ali, and M. A. R. Soliman, "A Prospective Randomized Study of the Safety and Efficacy of Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion Versus Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion in the Treatment of Lumbar Spondylolisthesis: A Cost utility from a Lower-middle-income Country Perspective and Re", Open Access Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences, vol. 9, issue B, pp. 636-645, 2021.
Khan, A., M. A. R. Soliman, M. M. Ghannam, P. K. Jowdy, R. Hess, M. J. Recker, and R. M. Reynolds, "Spinal cord glioblastoma multiforme in a patient with Noonan syndrome: A clinical report.", Clinical neurology and neurosurgery, vol. 207, pp. 106725, 2021. Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Currently, there are only 3 reported cases of central nervous system malignancies in patients with Noonan syndrome in the literature, all of which are intracranial pathologies. To our knowledge, there are no cases of spinal cord glioblastoma multiforme reported in the literature.

CASE DESCRIPTION: We describe the case of a 12-year-old girl with Noonan syndrome who presented with back pain and new onset neurological deficits and was found to have a spinal cord lesion. T10-L1 laminoplasty with safe maximal resection was done. Postoperative pathological analysis identified this lesion as a high-grade astrocytoma consistent with glioblastoma multiforme.

CONCLUSIONS: Spinal cord glioblastoma multiforme is a rare occurrence in the general population, particularly in a patient with an underlying diagnosis of Noonan syndrome. Patients with spinal cord tumors can present with a multitude of clinical signs and symptoms and treatment should not be delayed.

Mao, J. Z., A. Khan, M. A. R. Soliman, B. R. Levy, M. J. McGuire, R. V. Starling, R. M. Hess, J. O. Agyei, J. E. Meyers, J. P. Mullin, et al., "Use of the Scan-and-Plan Workflow in Next-Generation Robot-Assisted Pedicle Screw Insertion: Retrospective Cohort Study and Literature Review.", World neurosurgery, vol. 151, pp. e10-e18, 2021. Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To report our experience using the scan-and-plan workflow and review current literature on surgical efficiency, safety, and accuracy of next-generation robot-assisted (RA) spine surgery.

METHODS: The records of patients who underwent RA pedicle screw fixation were reviewed. The accuracy of pedicle screw placement was determined based on the Ravi classification system. To evaluate workflow efficiency, 3 demographically matched cohorts were created to analyze differences in time per screw placement (defined as operating room [OR] time divided by number of screws placed). Group A had <4 screws placed, Group B had 4 screws placed, and Group C had >4 screws placed. Intraoperative errors and postoperative complications were collected to elucidate safety.

RESULTS: Eighty-four RA cases (306 pedicle screws) were included for analysis. The mean number of screws placed was 2.1 ± 0.3 in Group A and 6.4 ± 1.2 in Group C; 4 screws were placed in Group B patients. The accuracy rate (Ravi grade I) was 98.4%. Screw placement time was significantly longer in Group A (101 ± 37.7 minutes) than Group B (50.5 ± 25.4 minutes) or C (43.6 ± 14.7 minutes). There were no intraoperative complications, robot failures, or in-hospital complications requiring a return to the OR.

CONCLUSIONS: The scan-and-plan workflow allowed for a high degree of accuracy. It was a safe method that provided a smooth and efficient OR workflow without registration errors or robotic failures. After the placement of 4 pedicle screws, the per-screw time remained constant. Further studies regarding efficiency and utility in multilevel procedures are necessary.

Almahdy, R. A., M. Wahid, A. A. A. Elkader, M. Lotfy, and M. A. R. Soliman, "The Utility of Multimodal Intraoperative Neuromonitoring in Spine Surgery: Case Series from a Lower-Middle-Income Country Perspective.", World neurosurgery, vol. 152, pp. e220-e226, 2021. Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Multimodal intraoperative neuromonitoring (IOM) using somatosensory-evoked potentials and motor-evoked potentials is a sensitive and specific tool for detecting intraoperative neurologic injury during spine surgery. This study aimed to evaluate the use of multimodal IOM in a lower-middle-income country (LMIC) during cervical and thoracic spine surgery in order to prevent and predict new postoperative neurologic deficits early on. This is the first report of multimodal IOM application in LMICs.

METHODS: The neurophysiologist raised the cutoff warning criteria of 50 patients who underwent surgery for different cervical and thoracic pathologies to decrease postoperative neurologic deficits. We retrospectively reviewed the medical charts and neuromonitoring traces of these patients followed by calculating the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of combined IOM for postoperative neurologic deficit occurrence.

RESULTS: A significant relationship was found between the reversibility of alerts and the development of new postoperative deficits (P < 0.001). There was no relationship between the cause of alerts and the reversibility of those alerts after corrective measures were carried out (P = 0.455), or the frequency of alerts and the development of new deficits postoperatively (P = 0.578). Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of combined somatosensory-evoked potential and motor-evoked potential monitoring were 100%, 80%, 62.5%, and 100%, respectively.

CONCLUSION: Because of the limited experience and the many technical difficulties faced in LMICs, we found that this cutoff limit resulted in more false-positive warnings but helped to avoid any false-negative results, thus enhancing the safety of surgery.

Almahdy, R. A., M. Wahid, A. A. A. Elkader, M. Lotfy, and M. A. R. Soliman, "The Utility of Multimodal Intraoperative Neuromonitoring in Spine Surgery: Case Series from a Lower-Middle-Income Country Perspective.", World neurosurgery, vol. 152, pp. e220-e226, 2021. Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Multimodal intraoperative neuromonitoring (IOM) using somatosensory-evoked potentials and motor-evoked potentials is a sensitive and specific tool for detecting intraoperative neurologic injury during spine surgery. This study aimed to evaluate the use of multimodal IOM in a lower-middle-income country (LMIC) during cervical and thoracic spine surgery in order to prevent and predict new postoperative neurologic deficits early on. This is the first report of multimodal IOM application in LMICs.

METHODS: The neurophysiologist raised the cutoff warning criteria of 50 patients who underwent surgery for different cervical and thoracic pathologies to decrease postoperative neurologic deficits. We retrospectively reviewed the medical charts and neuromonitoring traces of these patients followed by calculating the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of combined IOM for postoperative neurologic deficit occurrence.

RESULTS: A significant relationship was found between the reversibility of alerts and the development of new postoperative deficits (P < 0.001). There was no relationship between the cause of alerts and the reversibility of those alerts after corrective measures were carried out (P = 0.455), or the frequency of alerts and the development of new deficits postoperatively (P = 0.578). Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of combined somatosensory-evoked potential and motor-evoked potential monitoring were 100%, 80%, 62.5%, and 100%, respectively.

CONCLUSION: Because of the limited experience and the many technical difficulties faced in LMICs, we found that this cutoff limit resulted in more false-positive warnings but helped to avoid any false-negative results, thus enhancing the safety of surgery.

2020
Shahab, S., M. A. R. Soliman, A. F. Alkhamees, S. Eaton, E. Quint, J. Im, A. O'Connor, E. Haberfellner, and A. Shamisa, "Surgical intervention for spontaneous intracranial hypotension Type 4 CSF leak: A case report", Surgical neurology international, vol. 11: Scientific Scholar, pp. 421 - 421, 2020/12/04. AbstractWebsite

BACKGROUND: Spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH) is a rare condition that can be very debilitating. SIH is well understood to be due to a CSF leak, however, identifying the source of the leak is still a challenge. We are presenting a case of Type 4 CSF leak and reviewing the related literature. CASE DESCRIPTION: A 46-year-old female presenting with intractable orthostatic headaches was diagnosed with SIH. She was unable to mobilize due to the severity of her symptoms. MRI scans of the brain and spine did not identify a source of the leak. After failing conservative therapy and multiple epidural blood patches, the patient underwent surgery which resulted in significant improvement in symptoms. CONCLUSION: This study has shown that surgical intervention improves symptoms in patients who do not have an identifiable source of CSF leak. Further studies need to be done to fully understand the role of surgery in Type 4 CSF leaks.

Elmallawany, M., H. Kandel, M. A. R. Soliman, T. A. Tareef, A. Atallah, A. Elsaid, and W. Elmahdy, "The Safety and Efficacy of Cervical Laminectomy and Fusion versus Cervical Laminoplasty Surgery in Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy: A Prospective Randomized Trial", Open Access Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences, vol. 8, issue B, pp. 807-814, 2020/11/08. AbstractWebsite

<p><strong>BACKGROUND: </strong>There is a lack of evidence of whether degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM) is best treated through cervical laminoplasty (CLP) or cervical laminectomy with lateral mass fusion due to the lack of prospective randomized studies that are well designed. We conducted the largest prospective randomized trial to date to determine the comparative effectiveness and safety of both approaches.</p><p><strong>METHODS: </strong>In this prospective, randomized trial, we randomly assigned patients who had symptoms or signs of DCM to undergo either cervical laminectomy and lateral mass fixation (CLF) or CLP. The primary outcome measures were the change in the Visual Analog Scale (VAS), neck disability index, modified Japanese Orthopedic Association (mJOA) score, and Nurick’s myelopathy grading 1 year after surgery. The secondary outcome measures were the intraoperative, post-operative complications, hospital stay, C2-7 Cobb’s angle, and Odom’s criteria. The follow-up period was at least 1 year.</p><p><strong>RESULTS: </strong>A total of 30 patients (mean age, 54.5 ± 5.5 years, 70% of men) underwent prospective randomization. There was a significantly greater improvement in neck pain (VAS) in the CLF group at 1 year (p &lt; 0.05). The improvement in the mJOA and Nurick’s myelopathy grading showed insignificant improvement between both groups. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in the patient’s post-operative satisfaction (Odom’s criteria). The mean operative time was significantly longer in the CLF group (p &lt; 0.001), with no significant difference in the post-operative complications, however, there was a higher rate of C5 palsy, dural tear and infection in the CLF, and a higher rate of instrumentation failure in the CLP. The mean hospital stay was significantly longer in the posterior group (p &lt; 0.05). Finally, there was a significant better improvement in the C2-7 Cobb’s angle at 1 year in the CLF group (p &lt; 0.05).</p><p><strong>CONCLUSION: </strong>Among patients with multilevel DCM, the CLF approach was significantly better regarding the post-operative pain and Cobb’s angle while the CLP was significantly better in terms of shorter hospital stay and operative time.</p>

Soliman, M. A. R., M. Elbaroody, A. K. ElSamman, M. I. Refaat, E. Abd-Haleem, W. Elhalaby, H. Gouda, amr safwat, M. elShazly, H. Lasheen, et al., "Endoscopic endonasal skull base surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic: A developing country perspective", Surgical neurology international, vol. 11: Scientific Scholar, pp. 310 - 310, 2020/09/25. AbstractWebsite

BACKGROUND: Although primarily a respiratory disorder, the coronavirus pandemic has paralyzed almost all aspects of health-care delivery. Emergency procedures are likely continuing in most countries, however, some of them raises certain concerns to the surgeons such as the endoscopic endonasal skull base surgeries. The aim of this study is to present the current situation from a developing country perspective in dealing with such cases at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A cross-sectional analytical survey was distributed among neurosurgeons who performed emergency surgeries during the COVID-19 pandemic in Cairo, Egypt, between May 8, 2020, and June 7, 2020. The survey entailed patients' information (demographics, preoperative screening, and postoperative COVID-19 symptoms), surgical team information (demographics and postoperative COVID-19 symptoms), and operative information (personal protective equipment [PPE] utilization and basal craniectomy). RESULTS: Our survey was completed on June 7, 2020 (16 completed, 100% response rate). The patients were screened for COVID-19 preoperatively through complete blood cell (CBC) (100%), computed tomography (CT) chest (68.8%), chest examination (50%), C-reactive protein (CRP) (50%), and serological testing (6.3%). Only 18.8% of the surgical team utilized N95 mask and goggles, 12.5% utilized face shield, and none used PAPRs. Regarding the basal craniectomy, 81.3% used Kerrison Rongeur and chisel, 25% used a high-speed drill, and 6.3% used a mucosal shaver. None of the patients developed any COVID-19 symptoms during the first 3 weeks postsurgery and one of the surgeons developed high fever with negative nasopharyngeal swabs. CONCLUSION: In developing countries with limited resources, preoperative screening using chest examination, CBC, and CT chest might be sufficient to replace Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Developing countries require adequate support with screening tests, PPE, and critical care equipment such as ventilators.

El-Ghandour, N. M. F., E. H. Elsebaie, A. A. Salem, A. F. Alkhamees, M. A. Zaazoue, M. A. Fouda, R. G. Elbadry, M. Aly, H. Bakr, M. A. Labib, et al., "Letter: The Impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic on Neurosurgeons Worldwide", Neurosurgery, vol. 87, issue 2: Oxford University Press, pp. E250 - E257, 2020/08/01. AbstractWebsite
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Soliman, M. A. R., S. Eaton, E. Quint, A. F. Alkhamees, S. Shahab, A. O'Connor, E. Haberfellner, J. Im, A. A. Elashaal, F. Ling, et al., "Challenges, Learning Curve, and Safety of Endoscopic Endonasal Surgery of Sellar-Suprasellar Lesions in a Community Hospital", World neurosurgery, vol. 138: Elsevier Inc., pp. e940 - e954, 2020/06/. AbstractWebsite

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Endoscopic endonasal surgery (EES) for the management of sellar, suprasellar, and anterior skull base lesions is gaining popularity. Our aim was to analyze and present the clinical outcomes of EES for the management of these lesions in a community hospital setting. METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the charts of 56 patients with sellar, suprasellar, and anterior skull base lesions who underwent EES between 2010 and 2018. RESULTS: There was male predominance (53.6%) with a mean age of 54.9 ± 13.7 years. Lesions were 45 pituitary adenomas, 5 meningiomas, 3 metastatic, 1 craniopharyngioma, 1 Rathke cyst, and 1 mucocele. Gross total excision was achieved in 57.1%, subtotal excision occurred in 37.5%, and decompression and biopsy were achieved in 5.4% patients. Postoperative vision normalized or improved in 27 patients (86.1%) and was stable in 4 patients (13.9%). Recovery of a preexisting hormonal deficit occurred in 13 (23.2%) patients, and a new hormonal deficit occurred in 9 patients (16.1%). The mean hospital stay was 6.1 ± 4.9 days. Postoperative complications included cerebrospinal fluid leak in 8 patients (14.3%). Four patients (7.1%) had meningitis. Diabetes insipidus was present in 19 patients (33.9%), and postoperative intracranial hematoma requiring evacuation was necessary in 2 patients (3.6%). The mean follow-up duration was 47.5 ± 25.8 months. Lesion progression or recurrence requiring redo surgery occurred in 5 patients (8.9%). Regarding the learning curve, the postoperative cerebrospinal fluid leak, meningitis, new hormonal deficits, and diabetes insipidus decreased in the second half of the patients. CONCLUSIONS: EES provides an effective and safe surgical option with low morbidity and mortality for the treatment of sellar, suprasellar, and anterior skull base lesions in a community hospital setting.

Elwy, R., M. Soliman, A. Hasanain, ahmed ezzat, M. Elbaroody, M. Alsawy, and E. E. L. Refaee, Visual changes after space flight: is it really caused by increased intracranial tension? A systematic review, , vol. 64, 2020/04/29. Abstract
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Im, J., M. A. R. Soliman, A. F. Alkhamees, S. Eaton, E. Quint, S. Shahab, A. O'Connor, E. Haberfellner, and E. Dyer, Cervical Spine Chondrosarcoma in an Adult with a History of Wilms Tumor, , vol. 144, pp. 117 - 120, 2020. AbstractWebsite

IntroductionWe report the first case of cervical spine chondrosarcoma in a Wilms tumor survivor.
Case Description
A 52-year-old female patient presented with myelopathic symptoms including poor balance, difficulty walking, and numbness of both feet. A magnetic resonance imaging of the spine showed a mass at the right C7-T1 foramen causing significant cord compression. The patient's symptoms improved after posterior decompression and fusion with excision of the tumor.
Conclusion
Through our experience with this case, we would like to suggest a possible unknown genetic syndrome predisposing patients with Wilms tumor to chondrosarcoma as secondary neoplasms. We would also like to re-emphasize the need for vigilance when assessing patients with a history of Wilms tumor.

Elkady, A., M. A. R. Soliman, and A. M. Ali, Clinical Outcomes of Infratentorial Meningioma Surgery in a Developing Country, , vol. 137, pp. e373 - e382, 2020. AbstractWebsite

BackgroundNo data are available on incidence, surgical approaches, complications, and survival for patients with infratentorial meningiomas in developing countries. Predictors for surgical resection, recurrence, and complications were analyzed based on the surgical outcomes of patients with infratentorial meningiomas.
Methods
A total of 101 consecutive cases of infratentorial meningiomas operated on between April 2012 and April 2017 at our institute were reviewed retrospectively. The patients had a mean age of 55.1 ± 5 years, a female predominance of 62.3%, and the mean duration of follow-up duration was 44.2 ± 15.5 months.
Results
The most common surgical approach was retrosigmoid (n = 51) followed by suboccipital (n = 36), subtemporal (n = 8), and far lateral (n = 6). The preoperative presentation showed that affected cranial nerve was the most common presenting symptom (47.5%) followed by weakness (24.8%) and affected vision (16.8%) followed by headache (8.9%) and gait disturbance (6.9%). The extent of resection was grade I (n = 63), grade II (n = 15)and grade III (n = 23) according to the Simpson grading. The complication rate was 56 cases (55.4%); the most common complication was cranial nerve palsy (42.6%), followed by weakness (31.7%), hydrocephalus (16.8%), chest infection (8.9%), ataxia (4%), deep venous thrombosis (4%), cerebrospinal fluid leak (3%) and meningitis and pulmonary embolism (both 1%).
Conclusions
The location, surgical approach, preoperative Karnofsky Performance Status, and peritumor edema were significantly associated with complications. Compared with developed countries, we had a higher complication rate (P < 0.001), lower recurrence rate (P = 0.15), and slightly lower total resection rate (P = 0.29). These findings might be attributed to the patient's late presentation to the tertiary center and poor technical resources.