Syringo-subarachnoid shunt for syringomyelia associated with Chiari malformation (type 1).Acta Neurochir (Wien). 1990; 107(3-4):152-60.AN
The authors report the surgical results of 28 patients with syringomyelia associated with Chiari malformation (type 1). 28 patients underwent 34 operative procedures. Syringo-subarachnoid shunt was performed in 28 patients, foramen magnum decompression with syringo-subarachnoid shunt in three, ventriculo-peritoneal shunt in one, terminal syringostomy in one, and foramen magnum decompression with terminal syringostomy in one. In an average postoperative follow-up period of 3 years and 9 months ranging from one year to 7 years and one month, neurological symptoms and signs improved in 24 out of 28 patients (82%). Some improvement was noted in sensory deficit and motor weakness. In 3 patients, the symptoms did not change. In 3 patients whose symptoms were unchanged, preoperative studies demonstrated atrophy of the spinal cord, in which irreversible changes were shown. The symptoms deteriorated in one patient. In one patient whose symptoms increased 3 months after syringo-subarachnoid shunt, shunt insufficiency due to postoperative adhesive arachnoiditis was responsible for neurological deterioration. The authors propose that syringo-subarachnoid shunt is effective as a surgical procedure for syringomyelia associated with Chiari malformation (type 1) if the patient does not have symptoms due to Chiari malformation or has only mild signs and symptoms which do not require foramen magnum decompression, such as nystagmus or atrophy of sternocleidomastoid muscle.