The introduction of flow diverter devices is revolutionizing the endovascular approach to cerebral aneurysms. Midterm and long-term results of angiographic, cross-sectional imaging and clinical follow-up are still lacking. The authors report their experience with endovascular treatment of intracranial aneurysms using both the Pipeline embolization device and Silk stents.
From October 2008 to July 2011 a consecutive series of 104 intracranial aneurysms in 101 patients (79 female, 22 male; average age 53 years) were treated. Three of the 104 aneurysms were ruptured and 101 were unruptured. Silk stents were implanted in 47 of the aneurysms and Pipeline stents in the remaining 57. In 14 cases a combination of flow diverter devices and coils were used to treat larger aneurysms (maximum diameter > 15 mm).
Patients underwent angiographic follow-up examination at 6 months after treatment, with or without CT or MRI, and at 1 year using CT or MRI, with or without conventional angiography.
In all cases placement of flow diverter stents was technically successful. The mortality and morbidity rates were both 3%. Adverse events without lasting clinical sequelae occurred in 20% of cases. Angiography performed at 6 months after treatment showed complete aneurysm occlusion in 78 of 91 cases (86% of evaluated aneurysms) and subocclusion in 11 (12%); only in 2 cases were the aneurysms unchanged. Fifty-three aneurysms were evaluated at 1 year after treatment. None of these aneurysms showed recanalization, and 1 aneurysm, which was incompletely occluded at the 6-month follow-up examination, was finally occluded. Aneurysmal sac shrinkage was observed in 61% of assessable aneurysms.
Parent artery reconstruction using flow diverter devices is a feasible, safe, and successful technique for the treatment of endovascular treatment of cerebral aneurysms.