CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Asian J Neurosurg 2023; 18(02): 414-419
DOI: 10.1055/s-0043-1768571
Brief Report

Step Ladder Expansive Cranioplasty: A Novel Perspective in Cranial Volume Augmentation Surgery

Sudip Kumar Sengupta
1   Department of Neurosurgery, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune, Maharashtra, India
Shashivadhanan Sundervadhanan
1   Department of Neurosurgery, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune, Maharashtra, India
Tony J. Rappai
2   Department of Surgery, Military Hospital, Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh, India
3   Department of Neurosurgery, Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India
Sankar Prasad Gorthi
3   Department of Neurosurgery, Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India
4   Department of Neurosurgery, AFMC, Pune, Maharashtra, India
› Author Affiliations


Background In face of a refractory raised intracranial pressure (ICP), surgeons most commonly resort to decompressive craniectomy (DC). Procedure leaves an unprotected brain underlying the craniectomy defect and Monro-Kellie doctrine: disrupted. Different variants of hinge craniotomies (HC) have been used with clinical outcomes comparable to DC as single stage alternatives. However, both DC and every variant of HC have a limit to the achievable volume augmentation and all invariably cause a compression of the cerebral cortex and its vasculature at the craniotomy site. We believe both these limitations adversely affect the outcome.

Methods A team of neuroscientists in Indian Armed Forces Medical Services has been working for the last 9 years toward developing a novel surgical technique that can mitigate both these drawbacks. Desired procedure should take the centripetal pressure exerted by the combination of the tensile strength of the scalp (with or, without an underlying bone flap) and atmospheric pressure off the brain surface while achieving an assured augmentation of intracranial volume that can be optimized on a case-to-case basis. We call it a “step ladder expansive cranioplasty.”

Results The distance of the parietal eminence was found to have increased by 10.2 mm on the operated side after expansive cranioplasty.

Conclusion From drawing board to bedside, we have made some progress toward our goal, but it is still far away from completion. More studies are required to fill in the gaps in our knowledge necessary to optimize the various parameters of the surgery. Procedure has promise to be of special role in in war and disaster scenarios.

Publication History

Article published online:
06 June 2023

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