Risk of intracranial aneurysm recurrence after microsurgical clipping based on 3D digital subtraction angiography

J Neurosurg 138:717–723, 2023

Current knowledge of recurrence rates after intracranial aneurysm (IA) surgery relies on 2D digital subtraction angiography (DSA), which fails to detect more than 75% of small aneurysm remnants. Accordingly, the discrimination between recurrence and growth of a remnant remains challenging, and actual assessment of recurrence risk of clipped IAs could be inaccurate. The authors report, for the first time, 3D-DSA–based long-term durability and risk factor data of IA recurrence and remnant growth after microsurgical clipping.

METHODS Prospectively collected data for 305 patients, with a total of 329 clipped IAs that underwent baseline 3DDSA, were evaluated. The incidence of recurrent IA was described by Kaplan-Meier curves. Risk factors for IA recurrence were analyzed by multivariable Cox proportional hazards and logistic regression models.

RESULTS The overall observed proportion of IA recurrence after clipping was 2.7% (9 of 329 IAs) at a mean followup of 46 months (0.7% per year). While completely obliterated IAs did not recur during follow-up, incompletely clipped aneurysms (76 of 329) demonstrated remnant growth in 11.8% (3.4% per year). Young age and large initial IA size significantly increased the risk of IA recurrence.

CONCLUSIONS The findings support those in previous studies that hypothesized that completely clipped IAs have an extremely low risk of recurrence. Conversely, the results highlight the significant risk posed by incompletely clipped IAs. Young patients with initial large IAs and incomplete obliteration have an especially high risk for IA recurrence and therefore should be monitored more closely.

Helsinki style mini‑pterional craniotomy for clipping of middle cerebral artery bifurcation aneurysms

Acta Neurochirurgica (2023) 165:489–493

Different versions of the mini-pterional (MPT) approach have been described often with the idea the smaller the better. Attempts to reduce incision and craniotomy size for better cosmetic results should not be performed at the expense of safety.

Method We present our take on the MPT as a balance between size and safety which can be adopted by vascular neurosurgeons in training. The craniotomy stays within the confines of the superior temporal line and is completely covered by temporal muscle after closure.

Conclusion This approach is cosmetically superior while still offering anatomical familiarity and sufficient instrument maneuverability.

Association of Preoperative Vascular Wall Imaging Patterns and Surgical Outcomes in Patients With Unruptured Intracranial Saccular Aneurysms

Neurosurgery 92:421–430, 2023

MR vascular wall imaging (VWI) may have prognostic value in patients with unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs).

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the value of VWI as a predictor of surgical outcome in patients with UIAs.

METHODS: This prospective cohort study evaluated surgical outcomes in consecutive patients with UIAs who underwent surgical clipping at a single center. All participants underwent high-resolution VWI and were followed for at least 6 months. The primary clinical outcome was modified Rankin scale (mRS) score 6 months after surgery.

RESULTS: The number of patients in the no wall enhancement, uniformwall enhancement (UWE), and focal wall enhancement (FWE) groups was 37, 145, and 154, respectively. Incidence of postoperative complications was 15.5% in the FWE group, 12.4% in the UWE group, and 5.4% in the no wall enhancement group. The proportion of patients with mRS score >2 at the 6-month follow-up was significantly higher in the FWE group than in the UWE group (14.3% vs 6.9%; P = .0389). In the multivariate analysis, FWE (odds ratio, 2.573; 95% CI 1.001-6.612) and positive proximal artery remodeling (odds ratio, 10.56; 95% CI 2.237-49.83) were independent predictors of mRS score >2 at the 6-month follow-up.

CONCLUSION: Preoperative VWI can improve the surgeon’s understanding of aneurysm pathological structure. Type of aneurysmal wall enhancement on VWI is associated with clinical outcome and incidence of salvage anastomosis and surgical complications.

Transradial versus transfemoral access for embolization of intracranial aneurysms with the Woven EndoBridge device: a propensity score–matched study

J Neurosurg 137:1064–1071, 2022

Transradial access (TRA) is commonly utilized in neurointerventional procedures. This study compared the technical and clinical outcomes of the use of TRA versus those of transfemoral access (TFA) for intracranial aneurysm embolization with the Woven EndoBridge (WEB) device.

METHODS This is a secondary analysis of the Worldwide WEB Consortium, which comprises multicenter data related to adult patients with intracranial aneurysms who were managed with the WEB device. These aneurysms were categorized into two groups: those who were treated with TRA or TFA. Patient and aneurysm characteristics and technical and clinical outcomes were compared between groups. Propensity score matching (PSM) was used to match groups according to the following baseline characteristics: age, sex, subarachnoid hemorrhage, aneurysm location, bifurcation aneurysm, aneurysm with incorporated branch, neck width, aspect ratio, dome width, and elapsed time since the last follow-up imaging evaluation.

RESULTS This study included 682 intracranial aneurysms (median [interquartile range] age 61.3 [53.0–68.0] years), of which 561 were treated with TFA and 121 with TRA. PSM resulted in 65 matched pairs. After PSM, both groups had similar characteristics, angiographic and functional outcomes, and rates of retreatment, thromboembolic and hemorrhagic complications, and death. TFA was associated with longer procedure length (median 96.5 minutes vs 72.0 minutes, p = 0.006) and fluoroscopy time (28.2 minutes vs 24.8 minutes, p = 0.037) as compared with TRA. On the other hand, deployment issues were more common in those treated with TRA, but none resulted in permanent complications.

CONCLUSIONS TRA has comparable outcomes, with shorter procedure and fluoroscopy time, to TFA for aneurysm embolization with the WEB device.

Development and Internal Validation of the ARISE Prediction Models for Rebleeding After Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage

Neurosurgery 91:450–458, 2022

Aneurysmal rerupture is one of the most important determents for outcome after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage and still occurs frequently because individual risk assessment is challenging given the heterogeneity in patient characteristics and aneurysm morphology.

OBJECTIVE: To develop and internally validate a practical prediction model to estimate the risk of aneurysmal rerupture before aneurysm closure.

METHODS: We designed a multinational cohort study of 2 prospective hospital registries and 3 retrospective observational studies to predict the risk of computed tomography confirmed rebleeding within 24 and 72 hours after ictus. We assessed predictors with Cox proportional hazard regression analysis.

RESULTS: Rerupture occurred in 269 of 2075 patients. The cumulative incidence equaled 7% and 11% at 24 and 72 hours, respectively. Our base model included hypertension, World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies scale, Fisher grade, aneurysm size, and cerebrospinal fluid drainage before aneurysm closure and showed good discrimination with an optimism corrected c-statistic of 0.77. When we extend the base model with aneurysm irregularity, the optimism-corrected c-statistic increased to 0.79.

CONCLUSION: Our prediction models reliably estimate the risk of aneurysm rerupture after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage using predictor variables available upon hospital admission. An online prognostic calculator is accessible at https://www.evidencio. com/models/show/2626.


The influence of aneurysm morphology on the volume of hemorrhage after rupture

J Neurosurg 136:1015–1023, 2022

Factors determining the risk of rupture of intracranial aneurysms have been extensively studied; however, little attention is paid to variables influencing the volume of bleeding after rupture. In this study the authors aimed to evaluate the impact of aneurysm morphological variables on the amount of hemorrhage.

METHODS This was a retrospective cohort analysis of a prospectively collected data set of 116 patients presenting at a single center with subarachnoid hemorrhage due to aneurysmal rupture. A volumetric assessment of the total hemorrhage volume was performed from the initial noncontrast CT. Aneurysms were segmented and reproduced from the initial CT angiography study, and morphology indexes were calculated with a computer-assisted approach. Clinical and demographic characteristics of the patients were included in the study. Factors influencing the volume of hemorrhage were explored with univariate correlations, multiple linear regression analysis, and graphical probabilistic modeling.

RESULTS The univariate analysis demonstrated that several of the morphological variables but only the patient’s age from the clinical-demographic variables correlated (p < 0.05) with the volume of bleeding. Nine morphological variables correlated positively (absolute height, perpendicular height, maximum width, sac surface area, sac volume, size ratio, bottleneck factor, neck-to-vessel ratio, and width-to-vessel ratio) and two correlated negatively (parent vessel average diameter and the aneurysm angle). After multivariate analysis, only the aneurysm size ratio (p < 0.001) and the patient’s age (p = 0.023) remained statistically significant. The graphical probabilistic model confirmed the size ratio and the patient’s age as the variables most related to the total hemorrhage volume.

CONCLUSIONS A greater aneurysm size ratio and an older patient age are likely to entail a greater volume of bleeding after subarachnoid hemorrhage.


What is the role of neurosurgeons in the current management of intracranial aneurysm in France?

Neurochirurgie 68 (2022) 16–20 

Study Design. – Retrospective observational survey-based study.

Introduction. – In France, intracranial aneurysm (IA) patients are managed by neurosurgeons and by interventional neuroradiologists. The growth of endovascular treatment led us to reflect on the role of neurosurgeons in the management of patients with IA. The present study aimed to highlight the current organization of IA management in France.

Method. – A 60-question survey was sent to the neurosurgeons in 34 hospitals managing IA patients. Thirty-three questions dealt with standards of care, follow-up procedures and the involvement of thespecific specialist.

Results. – Twenty-seven centers (79.4%) responded to the survey. A Vascular Multidisciplinary DiscussionTeam was organized, including both surgeons and neuroradiologists, in 92% of responding centers. There were department protocols in 66% of centers, a local registry in 33% and clinical trials in IA in 60%. Patients with unruptured IA were first seen by a neurosurgeon or by an interventional neuroradiologist, with different practices. For ruptured IA, the neurosurgeons were contacted first in 93% of cases, and were systematically involved in initial intensive care unit management. The patients were hospitalized in the neurosurgery department in 89% of the centers. The neurosurgeons took care of initial follow-up in 85%of the centers, and of lifetime follow-up in 36%. In most centers, radiological monitoring of IA was based on MRI angiography for patients who were embolized or under surveillance, and on CT angiography after microsurgery.

Conclusion. – Despite the growth of endovascular treatments, the present survey and the literature highlight a major role of neurosurgeons in treatment, follow-up and care coordination

Cost-effectiveness analysis in patients with an unruptured cerebral aneurysm treated with observation or surgery

J Neurosurg 135:1608–1616, 2021

The main goal of preventive treatment of unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) is to avoid the morbidity and mortality associated with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage. A comparison between the conservative approach and the surgical approach combining endovascular treatment and microsurgical clipping is currently lacking. This study aimed to conduct an updated evaluation of cost-effectiveness comparing the two approaches in patients with UIA.

METHODS A decision tree with a Markov model was developed. Quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) associated with living with UIA before and after treatment were prospectively collected from a cohort of patients with UIA at a tertiary center. Other inputs were obtained from published literature. Using Monte Carlo simulation for patients aged 55, 65, and 75 years, the authors modeled the conservative management in comparison with preventive treatment. Different proportions of endovascular and microsurgical treatment were modeled to reflect existing practice variations between treatment centers. Outcomes were assessed in terms of QALYs. Sensitivity analyses to assess the model’s robustness and completed threshold analyses to examine the influence of input parameters were performed.

RESULTS Preventive treatment of UIAs consistently led to higher utility. Models using a higher proportion of endovascular therapy were more cost-effective. Models with older cohorts were less cost-effective than those with younger cohorts. Treatment was cost-effective (willingness to pay < 100,000 USD/QALY) if the annual rupture risk exceeded a threshold between 0.8% and 1.9% in various models based on the proportion of endovascular treatment and cohort age. A higher proportion of endovascular treatments and younger age lowered this threshold, making the treatment of aneurysms with a lower risk of rupture more cost-effective.

CONCLUSIONS Preventive treatment of aneurysms led to higher utility compared with conservative management. Models with a higher proportion of endovascular treatment and younger patient age were most cost-effective.

Aneurysm Wall Enhancement Is Associated With Decreased Intrasaccular IL-10 and Morphological Features of Instability

Neurosurgery 89:664–671, 2021

High-resolution vessel wall imaging plays an increasingly important role in assessing the risk of aneurysm rupture.

OBJECTIVE: To introduce an approach toward the validation of the wall enhancement as a direct surrogate parameter for aneurysm stability.

METHODS: A total of 19 patients harboring 22 incidental intracranial aneurysms were enrolled in this study. The aneurysms were dichotomized according to their aneurysm to- pituitary stalk contrast ratio using a cutoff value of 0.5 (nonenhancing < 0.5; enhancing ≥ 0.5). We evaluated the association of aneurysm wall enhancement with morphological characteristics, hemodynamic features, and inflammatory chemokines directly measured inside the aneurysm.

RESULTS: Differences in plasma concentration of chemokines and inflammatory molecules, morphological, and hemodynamic parameters were analyzed using the Welch test or Mann-Whitney U test. The concentration  IL-10 in the lumen of intracranial aneurysms with low wall enhancement was significantly increased compared to aneurysms with strong aneurysm wall enhancement (P = .014). The analysis of morphological and hemodynamic parameters showed significantly increased values for aneurysm volume (P=.03), aneurysm area (P=.044), maximal diameter (P=.049), and nonsphericity index (P=.021) for intracranial aneurysms with strong aneurysm wall enhancement. None of the hemodynamic parameters reached statistical significance; however, the total viscous shear force computed over the region of low wall shear stress showed a strong tendency toward significance (P = .053).

CONCLUSION: Aneurysmal wall enhancement shows strong associations with decreased intrasaccular IL-10 and established morphological indicators of aneurysm instability.


Surgical clipping of ophthalmic artery aneurysms

British Journal of Neurosurgery, 35:2, 157-160

The purpose of this study was to summary the characteristics of ophthalmic artery (OphA) aneurysms and to obtain the independent risk factors for poor prognosis of microsurgical clipping treatment for OphA aneurysms.

Methods: The clinical and microsurgical clipping results of all 63 patients with ophthalmic aneurysm were investigated and reviewed. The OphA aneurysm patient’s case records were reviewed including clinical characteristics, image findings, and clinical outcomes. Then, the risk factors of poor prognosis were analyzed retrospectively.

Results: Monocular blindness persisted in 4 patients (6.35%), 1 patient developed persistent vegetate state (PVS) (1.59%), while 4 patients (6.35%) died. The matching process constructed a cohort consisting of 9 poor outcome (Glasgow Outcome Scale, GOS 1–3) patients (14.3%), and 54 good outcome (GOS 4–5) patients (85.7%). Univariate analysis between the good outcome and poor outcome revealed statistical significance in age > 60 (p¼0.045), size (p¼0.016), and rupture before operation (p¼0.049). Further, multivariate logistic regression analysis identified age > 60 (odds ratio [OR], 5.877; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.039–33.254; p¼0.045) and aneurysm size > 10mm (OR, 9.417; 95% CI, 1.476–60.072; p¼0.018) as the independent risk factors for poor outcome in microsurgical clipping treatment for OphA aneurysms.

Conclusion: The significant independent risk factors associated with clipping OphA aneurysms are age (>60) and size (>10mm).


Frequency and risk factors for postoperative aneurysm residual after microsurgical clipping

Acta Neurochirurgica (2021) 163:131–138

Aneurysm residuals after clipping are a well-known problem, but the course of aneurysm remnants in follow-up is not well studied. No standards or follow-up guidelines exist for treatment of aneurysm remnants. The aim of this study was to evaluate the risk factors for postoperative aneurysm remnants and their changes during follow-up.

Methods We performed a retrospective analysis of 666 aneurysms treated via clipping in our hospital from 2006 to 2016. Postoperative and follow-up angiographic data were analyzed for aneurysm remnants and regrowth. Clinical parameters and aneurysm-specific characteristics were correlated with radiological results.

Results The frequency of aneurysm residuals was 12% (78/666). Aneurysms located in the middle cerebral artery (p = 0.02) showed a significantly lower risk for incomplete aneurysm occlusion. Larger aneurysms with a diameter of 11–25 mm (p = 0.005) showed a significantly higher risk for incomplete aneurysm occlusion. Five patients underwent re-clipping during the same hospital stay. Remnants were stratified based on morphological characteristics into “dog ears” (n = 60) and “broad based” (n = 13). The majority of the “dog ears” stayed stable, decreased in size, or vanished during follow-up. Broad-based remnants showed a higher risk of regrowth.

Conclusions A middle cerebral artery location seems to lower the risk for the incomplete clip occlusion of an aneurysm. Greater aneurysm size (11–25 mm) is associated with a postoperative aneurysm remnant. The majority of “dog-ear” remnants appear to remain stable during follow-up. In these cases, unnecessarily frequent angiographic checks could be avoided. By contrast, broadbased residuals show a higher risk of regrowth that requires close imaging controls if retreatment cannot be performed immediately.

Aspirin associated with decreased rate of intracranial aneurysm growth

J Neurosurg 133:1478–1485, 2020

Aspirin has emerged as a potential agent in the prevention of rupture of intracranial aneurysms (IAs). In this study, the authors’ goal was to test if aspirin is protective against aneurysm growth in patients harboring multiple IAs ≤ 5 mm.

METHODS The authors performed a retrospective review of a prospectively maintained database covering the period July 2009 through January 2019. Patients’ data were included if the following criteria were met: 1) the patient harbored multiple IAs; 2) designated primary aneurysms were treated by surgical/endovascular means; 3) the remaining aneurysms were observed for growth; and 4) a follow-up period of at least 5 years after the initial treatment was available. Demographics, earlier medical history, the rupture status of designated primary aneurysms, aneurysms’ angiographic features, and treatment modalities were gathered.

RESULTS The authors identified 146 patients harboring a total of 375 IAs. At the initial encounter, 146 aneurysms were treated and the remaining 229 aneurysms (2–5 mm) were observed. During the follow-up period, 24 (10.48%) of 229 aneurysms grew. All aneurysms observed to grow later underwent treatment. None of the observed aneurysms ruptured. Multivariate analysis showed that aspirin was significantly associated with a decreased rate of growth (odds ratio [OR] 0.19, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.05–0.63). Variables associated with an increased rate of growth included hypertension (OR 14.38, 95% CI 3.83–53.94), drug abuse (OR 11.26, 95% CI 1.21–104.65), history of polycystic kidney disease (OR 9.48, 95% CI 1.51–59.35), and subarachnoid hemorrhage at presentation (OR 5.91, 95% CI 1.83–19.09).

CONCLUSIONS In patients with multiple IAs, aspirin significantly decreased the rate of aneurysm growth over time. Additional prospective interventional studies are needed to validate these findings.

Neurosurgical simulator for training aneurysm microsurgery

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162:2313–2321

Due to its complexity and to existing treatment alternatives, exposure to intracranial aneurysm microsurgery at the time of neurosurgical residency is limited. The current state of the art includes training methods like assisting in surgeries, operating under supervision, and video training. These approaches are labor-intensive and difficult to fit into a timetable limited by the new work regulations. Existing virtual reality (VR)–based training modules lack patient-specific exercises and haptic properties and are thus inferior to hands-on training sessions and exposure to real surgical procedures.

Materials and methods We developed a physical simulator able to reproduce the experience of clipping an intracranial aneurysm based on a patient-specific 3D-printed model of the skull, brain, and arteries. The simulator is made of materials that not only imitate tissue properties including arterial wall patency, thickness, and elasticity but also able to recreate a pulsatile blood flow. A sample group of 25 neurosurgeons and residents (n = 16: early residency with less than 4 years of neurosurgical exposure; n = 9: late residency and board-certified neurosurgeons, 4–15 years of neurosurgical exposure) took part to the study. Participants evaluated the simulator and were asked to answer questions about surgical simulation anatomy, realism, haptics, tactility, and general usage, scored on a 5-point Likert scale. In order to evaluate the feasibility of a future validation study on the role of the simulator in neurosurgical postgraduate training, an expert neurosurgeon assessed participants’ clipping performance and a comparison between groups was done.

Results The proposed simulator is reliable and potentially useful for training neurosurgical residents and board-certified neurosurgeons. A large majority of participants (84%) found it a better alternative than conventional neurosurgical training methods.

Conclusion The integration of a new surgical simulator including blood circulation and pulsatility should be considered as part of the future armamentarium of postgraduate education aimed to ensure high training standards for current and future generations of neurosurgeons involved in intracranial aneurysm surgery. Resident training ,Surgical simulation,Surgical education ,Microsurgery , Intracranial aneurysm , Neurosurgery

The Hydrogel Endovascular Aneurysm Treatment Trial (HEAT): A Randomized Controlled Trial of the Second-Generation Hydrogel Coil

Neurosurgery 86:615–624, 2020

Aneurysm recurrence after coiling has been associated with aneurysm growth, (re)hemorrhage, and a greater need for follow-up. The second-generation HydroCoil Embolic System (HES; MicroVention, Inc) consists of a platinum core with integrated hydrogel and was developed to reduce recurrence through enhancing packing density and healing within the aneurysm.

OBJECTIVE: To compare recurrence between the second-generation HES and bare platinum coil (BPC) in the new-generation Hydrogel Endovascular Aneurysm Treatment Trial (HEAT).

METHODS: HEAT is a randomized, controlled trial that enrolled subjects with ruptured or unruptured 3- to 14-mm intracranial aneurysms amenable to coiling. The primary endpoint was aneurysm recurrence using the Raymond-Roy scale. Secondary endpoints included minor and major recurrence, packing density, adverse events related to the procedure and/or device, mortality, initial complete occlusion, aneurysm retreatment, hemorrhage fromtarget aneurysm during follow-up, aneurysmocclusion stability, and clinical outcome at final follow-up.

RESULTS: A total of 600 patients were randomized (HES, n = 297 and BPC, n = 303), including 28% with ruptured aneurysms. Recurrence occurred in 11 (4.4%) subjects in the HES arm and 44 (15.4%) subjects in the BPC arm (P = .002). While the initial occlusion rate was higher with BPC, the packing density and both major and minor recurrence rates were in favor of HES. Secondary endpoints including adverse events, retreatment, hemorrhage, mortality, and clinical outcome did not differ between arms.

CONCLUSION: Coiling of small-to-medium aneurysms with second-generation HES resulted in less recurrence when compared to BPC, without increased harm. These data further support the use of the second-generation HES for the embolization of intracranial aneurysms.


Occlusion Rate and Visual ComplicationsWith Flow-Diverter Stent Placed Across the Ophthalmic Artery’s Origin for Carotid-Ophthalmic Aneurysms: A Meta-Analysis

Neurosurgery 86:455–463, 2020

Flow-diverter stents (FDSs) have recently gained acceptance for the treatment of intracranial aneurysms, especially for carotid-ophthalmic aneurysms (COAs). However, complications have been reported after coverage of side branches, especially the ophthalmic artery (OA).

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate, through a meta-analysis, the occlusion rate, and the ophthalmic complications after treatment of COA by FDS.

METHODS:We reviewed on MEDLINE via PubMed, Embase via Ovid, and Cochrane central database via CENTRAL.We included all case serieswith at least 15 patients and clinical trials about flow diversion of aneurysms close to the OA’s origin. Among these studies, we only included articles with aneurysm occlusion rate and rate of new ophthalmic symptoms.

RESULTS: We included 16 studies with 913 COA treated by FDSs and covering the OA with a mean follow-up of 16.4 mo. The random-effect modeling analysis concerning the overall rate of new ophthalmic complications, after FDS deployment covering the OA, was 3.0% (CI95% 1.0-6.0). There was medium-high heterogeneity in the study reports P < .01, I2 = 70.2% [50.4%; 82.1%]. We were not able to statistically explain this heterogeneity with the performed analysis, which could be related to the design of the included studies. We found an overall aneurysm occlusion rate of 85.0% (95% CI 80.0-89.0).

CONCLUSION: Our meta-analysis found a high aneurysm occlusion rate (85%) and low rate of iatrogenic visual complications, with only 3.0% of new visual symptoms, after treatment of COA by FDS.

Ten-year analysis of saccular aneurysms in the Barrow Ruptured Aneurysm Trial

J Neurosurg 132:771–776, 2020

The authors present the 10-year results of the Barrow Ruptured Aneurysm Trial (BRAT) for saccular aneurysms. The 1-, 3-, and 6-year results of the trial have been previously reported, as have the 6-year results with respect to saccular aneurysms. This final report comparing the safety and efficacy of clipping versus coiling is limited to an analysis of those patients presenting with subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) from a ruptured saccular aneurysm.

METHODS In the study, 362 patients had saccular aneurysms and were randomized equally to the clipping and the coiling cohorts (181 each). The primary outcome analysis was based on the assigned treatment group; poor outcome was defined as a modified Rankin Scale (mRS) score > 2 and was independently adjudicated. The extent of aneurysm obliteration was adjudicated by a nontreating neuroradiologist.

RESULTS There was no statistically significant difference in poor outcome (mRS score > 2) or deaths between these 2 treatment arms during the 10 years of follow-up. Of 178 clip-assigned patients with saccular aneurysms, 1 (< 1%) was crossed over to coiling, and 64 (36%) of the 178 coil-assigned patients were crossed over to clipping. After the initial hospitalization, 2 of 241 (0.8%) clipped saccular aneurysms and 23 of 115 (20%) coiled saccular aneurysms required retreatment (p < 0.001). At the 10-year follow-up, 93% (50/54) of the clipped aneurysms were completely obliterated, compared with only 22% (5/23) of the coiled aneurysms (p < 0.001). Two patients had documented rebleeding, both died, and both were in the assigned and treated coiled cohort (2/83); no patient in the clipped cohort (0/175) died (p = 0.04). In 1 of these 2 patients, the hemorrhage was not from the target aneurysm but from an incidental basilar artery aneurysm, which was coiled at the same time.

CONCLUSIONS There was no significant difference in clinical outcomes between the 2 assigned treatment groups as measured by mRS outcomes or deaths. Clinical outcomes in the patients with posterior circulation aneurysms were better in the coiling group at 1 year, but after 1 year this difference was no longer statistically significant. Rates of complete aneurysm obliteration and rates of retreatment favored patients who actually underwent clipping compared with those who underwent coiling. Clinical trial registration no.: NCT01593267 (clinicaltrials.gov)

Flow diversion treatment of complex bifurcation aneurysms beyond the circle of Willis: complications, aneurysm sac occlusion, reabsorption, recurrence, and jailed branch modification at follow-up

J Neurosurg 131:1751–1762, 2019

The purpose of this study is to present the authors’ medium-term results, with special emphasis on complications, occlusion rate of the aneurysm sac (digital subtraction angiography [DSA] and MRI), and the fate of cortical branches and perforating arteries covered (“jailed”) by the flow diverter (FD) stent.

METHODS Between January 2010 and September 2017, 29 patients (14 female) with 30 aneurysms were treated with an FD stent. Twenty-one aneurysms were at the middle cerebral artery bifurcation, 8 were in the anterior communicating artery region, and 1 was a pericallosal artery bifurcation. Thirty-five cortical branches were covered. A single FD stent was used in all patients. Symptomatic and asymptomatic periprocedural and delayed complications were reported. DSA and MRI controls were analyzed to evaluate modification of the aneurysm sac and jailed branches.

RESULTS Permanent morbidity was 3.4% (1/29), due to a jailed branch occlusion, with a modified Rankin Scale (mRS) score of 2 at the last follow-up. Mortality and permanent complication with poor prognosis (mRS score > 2) rates were 0%. The mean follow-up time for DSA and MRI (mean ± SD) was 21 ± 14.5 months (range 3–66 months) and 19 ± 16 months (range 3–41 months), respectively. The mean time to aneurysm sac occlusion (available for 24 patients), including stable remodeling, was 11.8 ± 6 months (median 13, range 3–27 months). The overall occlusion rate was 82.1% (23/28), and it was 91.7% (22/24) in the group of patients with at least 2 DSA control sequences. One recanalization occurred at 41 months posttreatment. At the time of publication, at the latest follow-up, 7 (20%) of 35 covered branches were occluded, 18 (51.4%) showed a decreased caliber, and the remaining 10 (28.5%) were unchanged. MRI T2-weighted sequences showed complete sac reabsorption in 7/29 aneurysms (24.1%), and the remaining lesions were either smaller (55.2%) or unchanged (17.2%). MRI revealed asymptomatic and symptomatic ischemic events in perforator territories in 7/28 (25%) and 4/28 (14.3%) patients, respectively, which were reversible within 24 hours.

CONCLUSIONS Flow diversion of bifurcation aneurysms is feasible, with low rates of permanent morbidity and mortality and high occlusion rates; however, recurrence may occur. Caliber reduction and asymptomatic occlusion of covered cortical branches as well as silent perforator stroke are common. Ischemic complications may occur with no identified predictable factors. MRI controls should be required in all patients to evaluate silent ischemic lesions and aneurysm sac reabsorption over time.

Numerical Analysis of Bifurcation Angles and Branch Patterns in Intracranial Aneurysm Formation

Neurosurgery 85 (1): E31–E39. 2019

Hemodynamic factors, especially wall shear stress (WSS), are generally thought to play an important role in intracranial aneurysm (IA) formation. IAs frequently occur at bifurcation apices, where the vessels are exposed to the impact of WSS.

OBJECTIVE: To elucidate the relationship between bifurcation geometry and WSS for IA formation.

METHODS: Twenty-one bifurcation models varying in branch angles and branch diameters were made with 3-dimensional computer-aided design software. In all models, the value of maximum WSS (WSSMAX), the area of high WSS (AREA), and the magnitude of wall shear force over AREA (|Fw |) were investigated by the steady-flow simulation of computational fluid dynamics.

RESULTS: On the basis of statistical analysis, WSSMAX tended to be high when the bifurcation angle and/or branch diameter was small. AREA and |F⃗ | significantly increase as the bifurcation and/or the branch angle became larger.

CONCLUSION: The magnitude of WSS strongly correlated with bifurcation geometry. In addition to high WSS, AREA and |F⃗ | were thought to affect IA formation. Observed bifurcation geometry may predict IA formation. Large branch angles and small branch may increase the risk of IA formation.

Computer-aided analysis of middle cerebral artery tortuosity: association with aneurysm development

J Neurosurg 130:1478–1484, 2019

Blood vessel tortuosity may play an important role in the development of vessel abnormalities such as aneurysms. Currently, however, there are no studies analyzing the impact of brain blood vessel tortuosity on the risk of aneurysm formation. Therefore, the authors performed a computer-aided analysis of middle cerebral artery (MCA) tortuosity, especially among patients diagnosed with MCA aneurysms.

METHODS Anatomy of the MCAs of 54 patients with unruptured MCA aneurysms was retrospectively analyzed, as was that of 54 sex-, age-, and vessel side–matched control patients without MCA aneurysms. From medical records, the authors obtained each patient’s medical history including previous and current diseases and medications. For each patient, they calculated the following tortuosity descriptors: relative length (RL), sum of angle metrics (SOAM), triangular index (TI), product of angle distance (PAD), and inflection count metric (ICM).

RESULTS Patients with an MCA aneurysm had significantly lower RLs (0.75 ± 0.09 vs 0.83 ± 0.08, p < 0.01), SOAMs (0.45 ± 0.10 vs 0.60 ± 0.17, p < 0.01), and PADs (0.34 ± 0.09 vs 0.50 ± 0.17, p < 0.01). They also had significantly higher TIs (0.87 ± 0.04 vs 0.81 ± 0.07, p < 0.01) and ICMs (3.07 ± 1.58 vs 2.26 ± 1.12, p < 0.01). Female patients had significantly higher RLs (0.76 ± 0.11 vs 0.80 ± 0.09, p = 0.03) than male patients.

CONCLUSIONS Middle cerebral artery aneurysm formation is strongly associated with blood vessel tortuosity parameters, which can potentially be used to screen for patients at risk for MCA aneurysm formation.


Outcome After Clipping and Coiling for Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage in Clinical Practice in Europe, USA, and Australia

Neurosurgery 84:1019–1027, 2019

Within randomized clinical trials (RCTs), coiling of the ruptured aneurysm to prevent rebleeding results in better outcomes than clipping in patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH).

OBJECTIVE: To study the association of coiling and clipping with outcome after aSAH in daily clinical practice.

METHODS: In this controlled, nonrandomized study, we compared outcomes after endovascular coiling and neurosurgical clipping of ruptured intracranial aneurysms in an administrative dataset of 7658 aSAH patients (22 tertiary care hospitals from Europe, USA, Australia; 2007-2013). Because the results contradicted those of the randomized trials, findings were further explored in a large clinical dataset from 2 European centers (2006- 2016) of 1501 patients.

RESULTS: In the administrative dataset, the crude 14-d case-fatality rate was 6.4% (95% confidence interval [CI] 5.6%-7.2%) after clipping and 8.2% (95% CI 7.4%-9.1%) after coiling. After adjustment for age, sex, and comorbidity/severity, the odds ratio (OR) for 14-d casefatality after coiling compared to clipping was 1.32 (95% CI 1.10-1.58). In the clinical dataset crude 14-d case fatality ratewas 5.7% (95% CI 4.2%-7.8%) for clipping and 9.0% (95% CI 7.3%- 11.2%) for coiling. In multivariable logistic regression analysis, the OR for 14-d case-fatality after coiling compared to clipping was 1.7 (95% CI 1.1–2.7), for 90-d case-fatality 1.28 (95% CI 0.91–1.82) and for 90-d poor functional outcome 0.78 (95% CI 0.6–1.01).

CONCLUSION: In clinical practice, coiling after aSAH is associated with higher 14-d case-fatality than clipping and nonsuperior outcomes at 90 d. Both options need to be considered in aSAH patients. Further studies should address the reasons for the discrepancy between current data and those from the RCTs.

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