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Columbia Neurosurgeons Take a Closer Look at Brain Connectivity and Stroke Outcome

MikellCNS'13Dr. Sander Connolly, and Dr. Guy McKhann, neurosurgeons at Columbia University Medical Center, are senior authors of a research paper that tackles one of the deadliest kinds of stroke, intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). This kind of stroke is caused by bleeding in the brain and when patients survive they are often left severely disabled with motor deficits like hemiplegia (weakness on one side of their body).

Fifth-year Columbia Neurosurgery resident, Dr. Charles Mikell, presented the research titled, Interhemispheric Connectivity in ICH, at the annual meeting of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS) in San Francisco recently.

The authors delved into the underlying mechanism that causes weakness (hemiplegia) in patients with a brain bleed and found a relationship between the loss of strength and how the two hemispheres (sides) of the brain are connected. According to the authors, “The motor network was significantly less connected in patients who were hemiplegic.” They concluded, “These data, while preliminary, support a role for interhemispheric connectivity in recovery from stroke. Specifically information flow from left to right is associated with maintenance of strength after hemorrhage [bleeding in the brain].”

Dr. E. Sander Connolly

This is an exciting discovery that will likely lead to further research. The presentation at the CNS meeting garnered a lot of interest and questions that Dr. Mikell was happy to answer.

Co-authors of the paper included the following scientists, medical students, and neurosurgeons: Charles B. Mikell, Michael Maurice McDowell, Marc Louis Otten, Andrew Kai-Hong Chan, Blake Eaton Samuel Taylor, Rachel Bruce, Eric S. Sussman, Samuel S. Bruce, Guy M. McKhann, II, and E. Sander Connolly, Jr..

Dr. Guy McKhann

You can learn more about the paper’s senior authors Dr. Sander Connolly on his bio page here, and Dr. Guy McKhann on his bio page here.

patient journey

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