Cavernous malformations (CMs) in deep locations account for 9% to 35% of brain malformations and are surgically challenging.To study the clinical features and outcomes following surgery for deep CMs and the complication of hypertrophic olivary degeneration (HOD).Clinical records, radiological findings, operative details, and complications of 176 patients with deep CMs were reviewed retrospectively.Of 176 patients with 179 CMs, 136 CMs were in the brainstem, 27 in the basal ganglia, and 16 in the thalamus. Cranial nerve deficits (51.1%), hemiparesis (40.9%), numbness (34.7%), and cerebellar symptoms (38.6%) presented most commonly. Hemorrhage presented in 172 patients (70 single, 102 multiple). The annual retrospective hemorrhage rate was 5.1% (assuming CMs are congenital with uniform hemorrhage risk throughout life); the rebleed rate was 31.5%/patient per year. Surgical approach depended on the proximity of the CM to the pial or ependymal surface. Postoperatively, 121 patients (68.8%) had no new neurological deficits. Follow-up occurred in 170 patients. Delayed postoperative HOD developed in 9/134 (6.7%) patients with brainstem CMs. HOD occurred predominantly following surgery for pontine CMs (9/10 patients). Three patients with HOD had palatal myoclonus, nystagmus, and oscillopsia, whereas 1 patient each had limb tremor and hemiballismus. At follow-up, 105 patients (61.8%) improved, 44 (25.9%) were unchanged, and 19 (11.2%) worsened neurologically. Good preoperative modified Rankin Score (98.2% vs 54.5%, P = .001) and single hemorrhage (89% vs 77.3%, P < .05) were predictive of good long-term outcome.Symptomatic deep CMs can be resected with acceptable morbidity and outcomes. Good preoperative modified Rankin Score and single hemorrhage are predictors of good long-term outcome.
View details for DOI 10.1227/NEU.0b013e318283c9c2
View details for PubMedID 23262564