Feasibility and efficacy of transcranial motor-evoked potential monitoring in neuroendovascular surgery

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Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Neurophysiological monitoring for neuroendovascular procedures typically involves EEG and SSEP monitoring via cutaneous electrodes. MEP monitoring has been used less frequently because, traditionally, this has required subdural electrode placement. With the advent of transcutaneous techniques, MEP monitoring use has increased. However, little has been published regarding the use of this technique in therapeutic neuroendovascular procedures. The purpose of this study was therefore to determine whether TcMEP monitoring is feasible and efficacious in therapeutic neuroendovascular procedures. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed our data base of therapeutic neuroendovascular procedures performed with the use of TcMEP monitoring. We specifically determined the incidence of TcMEP changes compared with changes in either SSEP or EEG. We then correlated these changes to actual adverse neurologic events. RESULTS: Although TcMEP monitoring was technically successful in all of the 140 patients in which it was attempted, we observed significant changes in TcMEP signals in only 1 patient. This patient experienced changes involving all 3 monitoring modalities after intraprocedural aneurysm rupture. In contrast, changes in SSEP tracings alone were found in 9 patients. Of these, 2 patients were known to be moribund before their procedures and neither recovered. Among the remaining 7 patients, temporary SSEP changes tended to correlate with temporary neurologic deficits, while permanent changes were associated with permanent or long-lasting deficits. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that TcMEP monitoring is feasible in therapeutic neuroendovascular procedures. However, it appears that the addition of TcMEP monitoring provides no added benefit to SSEP and EEG monitoring alone.

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Horton, T. G., Barnes, M., Johnson, S., Kalapos, P. C., Link, A., & Cockroft, K. M. (2012). Feasibility and efficacy of transcranial motor-evoked potential monitoring in neuroendovascular surgery. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 33(9), 1825–1831. https://doi.org/10.3174/ajnr.A3017

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