Aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage diagnosis with computed tomographic angiography and OsiriX

Acta Neurochir DOI 10.1007/s00701-009-0508-x

Purpose Recent advances in computed tomographic angiography (CTA) have resulted in its replacing digital subtraction angiography (DSA). However, CTA requires a powerful workstation and experienced technicians for image postprocessing. OsiriX, a free open-source medical imaging software with powerful three-dimensional (3D) capability, enables neurosurgeons to perform 3D rendering without extensive training. In this study, we examined the sensitivity and specificity of CTA with OsiriX as the primary diagnostic tool for intracranial aneurysms.

Method From May 2006 to March 2009, 121 patients with spontaneous subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) underwent CTA. The CTA source images were 3D rendered by neurosurgeons using OsiriX. All the possible locations for aneurysms were carefully reviewed. DSA was performed on every patient in any of the following conditions: for negative CTA findings, after surgical clipping of aneurysms or before transarterial embolization of aneurysms.

Results Of the 121 patients, 8 were excluded because DSA data were not available. In the remaining 113 patients, 20 patients had negative CTA findings. CTA with OsiriX detected 106 aneurysms in 93 patients, of which 103 were confirmed by DSA or postoperative DSA; 3 infundibular dilated pouches of small arteries were mistaken for aneurysms. Two anterior communicating artery aneurysms (1.5 mm and 1 mm) were missed by CTA from among all 113 patients. The sensitivity and specificity of CTA for detecting aneurysms on a per-patient basis were 98.9% and 100%, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of CTA for detecting aneurysms on a per-aneurysm basis for detecting aneurysms were 98.1% and 86.3%, respectively.

Conclusion CTA with OsiriX enables accurate detection of intracranial aneurysms. Cerebral DSA should be reserved for those patients with negative CTA findings.