The effect of craniotomy on the intracranial hemodynamics and cerebrospinal fluid dynamics in humans

[Article in Russian]

Authors: Moskalenko YE, Vainshtein GB, Kravchenko TI, Mozhaev SV, Semernia VN, Feilding A, Halvorson P, Medvedev SV.


The goal of the research was to study the effect of the trepanation of the human cranial cavity on the intracranial hemodynamics and fluid (CSF) dynamics. The sample comprised 15 patients of a neurosurgical clinic in whom a trephine opening in the cranial bones was made for medical indications. In these patients, at rest and during an appropriate functional load, we recorded pulse changes in blood circulation (by transcranial Doppler sonography) and in the ratio between the pulse fluctuations in the blood and CSF volumes (by rheoencephalography) before and after surgery. Simultaneous recording of these parameters followed by computer pattern and phase analyses allowed evaluation of the complex biomedical compliance of the cranium during successive phases of the cardiac rhythm: the inflow of arterial blood, the redistribution of blood/CSF volumes, and the outflow of venous blood. Analysis of the results showed a beneficial or craniotomy on the intracranial hemodynamics and CSF dynamics. This was reflected in an increase in the cranial compliance, which increased the pulse increment in the volume of the arterial blood in the skull almost twofold. After craniotomy the cross-flow of CSF between the cranial and spinal cavities decreased significantly, giving way to volumetric compensatory translocations of blood and CSF within the cranial cavity per se during the cardiac cycle, which increased the intracranial utilization of the energy of the cardiac output and contributed to the outflow of venous blood from the cranium. The results suggest a beneficial effect of craniotomy on the physiological mechanisms of the circulatory and metabolic maintenance of the brain activity.