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The 2020 update of the Canadian Stroke Best Practice Recommendations (CSBPR) for the Secondary Prevention of Stroke includes current evidence-based recommendations and expert opinions intended for use by clinicians across a broad range of settings. They provide guidance for the prevention of ischemic stroke recurrence through the identification and management of modifiable vascular risk factors. Recommendations address triage, diagnostic testing, lifestyle behaviors, vaping, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, atrial fibrillation, other cardiac conditions, antiplatelet and anticoagulant therapies, and carotid and vertebral artery disease. This update of the previous 2017 guideline contains several new or revised recommendations. Recommendations regarding triage and initial assessment of acute transient ischemic attack (TIA) and minor stroke have been simplified, and selected aspects of the etiological stroke workup are revised. Updated treatment recommendations based on new evidence have been made for dual antiplatelet therapy for TIA and minor stroke; anticoagulant therapy for atrial fibrillation; embolic strokes of undetermined source; low-density lipoprotein lowering; hypertriglyceridemia; diabetes treatment; and patent foramen ovale management. A new section has been added to provide practical guidance regarding temporary interruption of antithrombotic therapy for surgical procedures. Cancer-associated ischemic stroke is addressed. A section on virtual care delivery of secondary stroke prevention services in included to highlight a shifting paradigm of care delivery made more urgent by the global pandemic. In addition, where appropriate, sex differences as they pertain to treatments have been addressed. The CSBPR include supporting materials such as implementation resources to facilitate the adoption of evidence into practice and performance measures to enable monitoring of uptake and effectiveness of recommendations.
Objectives: To examine the effect of pre-injury alcohol use, acute alcohol intoxication, and post-injury alcohol use on outcome from mild to moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI). Methods: Prospective inception cohort of patients who presented to the Emergency Department with mild to moderate TBI and had a blood alcohol level (BAL) taken for clinical purposes. Those who completed the 1-year outcome assessment were eligible for this study (N=91). Outcomes of interest were the count of post-concussion symptoms (British Columbia Post-Concussion Symptom Inventory), low neuropsychological test scores (Neuropsychological Assessment Battery), and abnormal regions of interest on diffusion tensor imaging (low fractional anisotropy). The main predictors were pre-injury alcohol consumption (Cognitive Lifetime Drinking History interview), BAL, and post-injury alcohol use. Results: The alcohol use variables were moderately to strongly inter-correlated. None of the alcohol use variables (whether continuous or categorical) were related to 1-year TBI outcomes in generalized linear modeling. Participants in this cohort generally had a good clinical outcome, regardless of their pre-, peri-, and post-injury alcohol use. Conclusions: Alcohol may not significantly alter long-term outcome from mild to moderate TBI. (JINS, 2016, 22, 816–827)
Medulloblastoma is the most common malignant central nervous system tumour in children but, in contrast, quite rare in adults. Hemispheric, rather than midline, cerebellar medulloblastomas are more common in older children and adults. We present the unusual case of a 71-year-old man who presented with a fourth ventricular mass that proved to be a medulloblastoma.
A 71-year-old man presented with progressive balance problems, slurred speech and double vision. A CT scan of the brain revealed a hyperattenuating, partially calcified, avidly enhancing mass within the fourth ventricle. Diffusion weighted MRI showed restricted diffusion within the mass. The patient underwent a midline suboccipital craniotomy and a subtotal resection was achieved.
Histological examination showed a densely cellular neoplasm composed of small cells with a tendency towards neuroblastic rosette formation. Most cells were strongly positive for neuron-specific enolase and synaptophysin. Ultrastructurally, tumour cells showed evidence of neuronal differentiation. These findings were consistent with a classical medulloblastoma.
Adult medulloblastoma should be considered in the differential diagnosis of a partially calcified hyperattenuating mass within the fourth ventricle.
The neurological determination of death (NDD) is primarily considered to be clinical. However, situations may arise where confounding factors make this clinical assessment difficult or impossible. As a result, ancillary tests have been developed in order to aid in the confirmation of brain death. As assessment of neuronal electrical activity; electroencephalography (EEG) is no longer recommended in this determination, tools assessing cerebral perfusion, as reflected by the presence or absence of cerebral blood flow (CBF), are the mainstay of NDD. The preferred ancillary test currently is Hexamethylpropylene amine oxime-single photon emission computed tomography (HMPAO SPECT) radionuclide angiography. When this is not available, or is equivocal, 4-vessel cerebral angiography can be used to determine the presence or absence of intracranial blood flow. However, as cerebral angiography has its own limitations, other techniques are sought by physicians in the Intensive Care and Neuro-intensive Care settings to replace cerebral angiography. In this article, we briefly review the history of diagnosis of brain death, pathophysiologic issues in making this determination, and currently available CBF imaging techniques, discussing each in turn with respect to their utility in the diagnosis of brain death.
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