Decompressive hemicraniectomy for ischemic stroke in the pediatric population

Decompressive hemicraniectomy for ischemic stroke in the pediatric population

  • Sacit Bulent Omay
  • , Geneive M. Carrión-Grant
  • , Gregory A. Kuzmik
  • , Michael Fu
  • , Ryan Grant
  • ,Joseph L. Schindler
  • , Michael L. Diluna
  • , Charles C. Duncan
  • , Ketan R. Bulsara 


Adult patients with space-occupying hemispheric infarctions have a poor prognosis, with an associated fatality rate of 80 %. Decompressive hemicraniectomy (DH) has been studied as a treatment option for patients with malignant cerebral infarction refractory to maximal medical therapy, with reasonable outcomes demonstrated in the adult population if the patient is decompressed within 48 h. However, there are no randomized controlled trials in the pediatric literature to make the same claims. In this study, we evaluated the current literature in regards to DH following malignant stroke in the pediatric population. We found that excellent recovery, with an acceptable quality of life, is possible, particularly in the pediatric patient. Our cohort suggests that pediatric intervention beyond the 48-h time interval may still lead to positive outcomes, unlike adult patients. Regardless, randomized controlled trials are needed to determine optimal timing of intervention following symptom onset, as well as to identify predictors for positive outcome in the pediatric population.


Decompressive craniectomy Hemicraniectomy Malignant cerebral infarction Pediatric Children Stroke


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