Acta Neurochirurgica Supplements

Volume 102 of the series Acta Neurochirurgica Supplementum pp 279-282

Biomechanical modeling of decompressive craniectomy in traumatic brain injury

  • Chun Ping GaoAffiliated withDepartment of Neurosurgery, National Neuroscience Institute
  • , Beng Ti AngAffiliated withDepartment of Neurosurgery, National Neuroscience Institute

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Background Decompressive craniectomy is the final phase in the graded scheme of critical care management of refractory raised intracranial pressure following severe traumatic brain injury. We aim to define the optimal size for decompressive craniectomy so that a good balance is achieved between reduction of raised ICP and the extent of trans-calvarial herniation. Provision of such quantitative data will also allow for improved data comparison in clinical trials addressing the surgical management of severe head injury.

Methods In this study, we utilize a finite element mesh model and focus on the effect of size of both unilateral and bifrontal decompressive craniectomy on intracranial pressure and brain herniation.

Findings The finite element mesh model is able to effect modeling of brain deformation and intracranial pressure changes following both unilateral fronto-parietal-temporal and bifrontal decompressive craniectomy.

Conclusions Finite element mesh modeling in the scenario of reafractory raised intracranial pressure following severe head injury may be able to guide the optimal conduct of decompressive surgery so as to effect a reduction in intracranial pressure whilst minimizing trans-calvarial brain herniation.


Decompressive craniectomy Intracranial pressure Finite element Herniation