NEUROLOGICAL RESEARCH, vol.44, no.2, pp.165-176, 2022 (SCI-Expanded)
Background The prognosis of the Chiari malformation type 1 (CM1) demonstrates a variant spectrum that varies from full recovery to complicated worse neurological disability. Objective To investigate the factors affecting the outcomes of conservative and surgical treatment for CM1 by evaluating adult patients consecutively managed at our institutions. Materials and methods We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of patients diagnosed with CM1 at two reference neurosurgical centers for eight years (2010-2017). We selected all CM1 adult patients who managed conservatively or surgically as the core sample for this study. For clinical evaluation, we used a Chicago Chiari Outcome Scale (CCOS). For radiological assessment, we adopted both craniocervical and contrast-phase MRIs. We investigate factors such as age, sex, pretreatment symptoms, symptoms duration, and radiological findings in both groups. Results Ninety patients were treated conservatively. After a progression, five of them were treated surgically later and included in a total of 72 patients who underwent decompressive surgery. We successfully managed 85 patients (94.4%) of the conservative group and 64 patients (88.9%) of the surgical group. We found that patients with aqueductal stroke volume (ASV) of 12 mu l are surgical candidates. We observed a strong positive correlation between clinical improvement and the increase in ASV values. Conclusions ASV <= 12 mu l is a significant predictor for surgical intervention. The presence of heavy sleep apnea or/and functional symptoms, tonsillar herniation >13.4 mm on coronal images, low ASV, long symptom durations, and a syrinx are the independent prognostic factors that affected outcomes negatively.