Stenting for Venous Sinus Stenosis in Patients With Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension

Neurosurgery 94:648–656, 2024

Although venous sinus stenting (VSS) improves cerebrospinal fluid reabsorption and decreases intracranial pressure in patients with idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH), the underlying pathophysiology of IIH is not well understood. We present a review and meta-analysis of the literature on VSS for IIH treatment, focusing on the rates of restenosis and symptom recurrence.

METHODS: We performed a systematic review of PubMed and Embase databases between January 1, 2011, and December 31, 2021. Articles including ≥5 patients with IIH and venous sinus stenosis treated with VSS and posttreatment rates of restenosis (de novo stenosis at a different anatomic location along the dural sinuses or restenosis within or adjacent to the stent) were selected. Demographic, procedural, and outcomes data were collected and analyzed. Mean values for variables collected were pooled, and a mean value was calculated with a 95% CI.

RESULTS: Twenty-four articles were included, comprising 694 patients and 781 VSS cases. The mean age was 33.9 (CI, 31.5-36.2) years. The mean body mass index was 35.3 (CI, 32.9-37.7) kg/m2 . Before VSS, 98.8% (CI, 96.8%-100.0%) of patients experienced headaches, 87.7% (CI, 80.6%-95.5%) had visual acuity issues, 78.7% (CI, 69.9%-88.5%) had papilledema, 58.3% (CI, 46.0%-73.9%) had tinnitus, and 98.8% (96.4%-100.0%) had symptoms refractory to previous therapies. After VSS, 77.7% (CI, 71.1%-84.95%) experienced symptom improvement and 22.3% (CI, 15.1%-29.0%) had persistent or worsened symptoms. Pooled restenosis rate was 17.7% (CI, 14.9%-20.9%).

CONCLUSION: VSS is effective in alleviating IIH signs and symptoms, but the associated high rates of restenosis and persistent symptoms highlight the need for further investigation of this procedure and other adjunctive treatments for IIH.