Objective: Syndromes resulting from decreased cerebral blood flow and metabolic activity have significant clinical and social repercussion. However, treatment options are limited. Cervical spinal cord stimulation has shown clinical benefit in the management of several ischemic syndromes. The aim of this report was to assess the effect of cervical spinal cord stimulation on cerebral glucose metabolism.
Materials and methods: Between April 2000 and December 2005, 16 patients with brain tumors were assessed. Before and during spinal cord stimulation, they had cerebral glucose metabolism evaluated using 18fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron emission tomography (18FDG-PET) in the healthy cerebral hemisphere contralateral to the lesion area.
Results: Following cervical spinal cord stimulation, there was a significant (p<0.001) increase in glucose metabolism in healthy cerebral hemisphere. The measured increase was 37.7%, with an estimated potential maximal contribution of the first 18fluoro-2-deoxyglucose injection to the quantification of the second positron emission tomography study (carry-over effect)<or=16.6%.
Conclusion: Cervical spinal cord stimulation can increase cerebral glucose metabolism. This result supports the potential usefulness of this neurosurgical technique as an adjuvant treatment in stroke and brain disorders that result from decreased blood flow and metabolism.