gms | German Medical Science

63rd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)
Joint Meeting with the Japanese Neurosurgical Society (JNS)

German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)

13 - 16 June 2012, Leipzig

The neolithic school of neurosurgery in Central Germany

Meeting Abstract

  • A. Alfieri - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Halle, Halle/Saale
  • H. Meller - Landesmuseum für Vorgeschichte, Halle/Saale
  • B.S. Stoll-Tucker - Landesmuseum für Vorgeschichte, Halle/Saale
  • P. Tacik - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Halle, Halle/Saale
  • S.B. Brandt - Institut für Radiologie, Universitätsklinikum Halle, Halle/Saale
  • C. Strauss - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Halle, Halle/Saale

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Japanische Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. 63. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (DGNC), Joint Meeting mit der Japanischen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (JNS). Leipzig, 13.-16.06.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. DocP 004

DOI: 10.3205/12dgnc392, URN: urn:nbn:de:0183-12dgnc3924

Published: June 4, 2012

© 2012 Alfieri et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/deed.en). You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.


Outline

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Objective: We present an outstanding example of successful prehistorical double trephination in Central Germany using the scramble technique dating between 2700 and 2200 B.C, most likely in the Corded Ware at the end of Neolithic Age.

Methods: Paul Berger, a local pharmacist and amateur archeologist, discovered 1910 in a commune gravesite in Pritschöna, few miles near to Halle (Saxony-Anhalt, Germany) a skeleton in lateral position, with bended knees and a silex blade. Previous archaeological studies could date the found at the Corded Ware Age between 2700 and 2200 B.C. The skull revealed two trephinations, performed presumably at different times. We performed a spiral CT-scan and consequence morphometric and structural analysis of the double trephined skull.

Results: Our morphometric analysis showed that the subject was a young female, with an exceptional well saved dentition. The frontal trephination is over the sinus sagittal superior, the parietal one over the cortex of the temporo-parieto-occipital carrefour. Our researches showed that the neolithic woman was operated by scrape with clear surviving signs, such osteoblastic activity. The frontal trephination of this case was located over the sagittal sinus, therefore the requested skillfulness in preservation of the dura was more higher than other cases. The survival of the patient suggests indeed that there was not damage of the underlying venous sinus. In this case the indication of the trephination remains obscure.

Conclusions: The central European region was in Neolithic Age outstandingly specialized in this trephinations with rudimental anesthetic, antiseptic and technologic assists, with a rate of survival of 90.5%, much higher compared to other geographical region. In fact, even after double craniectomy in Neolithic age, as documented in this case, there was a survival possibility. The indication for the procedures remains unclear.