Eric J. Arias, Bhuvic Patel, DeWitte T. Cross III, Christopher J. Moran, Ralph G. Dacey Jr., Gregory J. Zipfel and Colin P. Derdeyn
Most patients with asymptomatic intracranial aneurysms treated with endovascular methods are closely observed overnight in an intensive care unit setting for complications, including ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke, cardiac dysfunction, and groin access complications. The purpose of this study was to analyze the timing, nature, and rate of in-house postoperative events.
Patients who underwent endovascular treatment or retreatment of unruptured cerebral aneurysms from March 2002 to June 2012 were identified from a prospective case log and their medical records were reviewed. The presentation, patient characteristics, aneurysm size and location, and method of endovascular treatment of each cerebral aneurysm were recorded. Patients with adverse intraprocedural events including perforation and thromboembolism were excluded from this analysis. Overnight postprocedural monitoring was performed in a neurological intensive care unit or postanesthesia care unit for all patients, with discharge planned for postoperative Day 1. Postprocedural events occurring during hospitalization were categorized as intracranial hemorrhage, ischemic stroke, groin hematoma resulting in additional treatment or prolonged hospital stay, retroperitoneal hematoma, and cardiac events. The time from the completion of the procedure to event discovery was recorded.
A total of 687 endovascular treatments of unruptured cerebral aneurysms were performed. Nine treatments were excluded from our analysis due to intraprocedural events. Endovascular procedures included coiling alone, stent-assisted coiling, balloon-assisted coiling, balloon-assisted embolization with a liquid embolic agent, and placement of a flow diversion device with or without coiling. Twenty-seven treatments (4.0%) resulted in postprocedural complications: 3 intracranial hemorrhages, 6 ischemic strokes, 4 cardiac events, 5 retroperitoneal hematomas, and 9 groin hematomas. The majority (20 [74.0%]) of these 27 complications were detected within 4 hours from the procedure. These included 1 hemorrhage, 4 ischemic strokes, 4 cardiac events, 2 retroperitoneal hematomas, and 9 groin hematomas. All cardiac events and groin hematomas were detected within 4 hours. Four (14%) of the 27 complications were detected between 4 and 12 hours, 1 (3.7%) between 12 and 24 hours, and 2 (7.4%) more than 24 hours after the procedure. The complications detected more than 4 hours from the conclusion of the procedure included 2 minor intracranial hemorrhages causing headache and resulting in no permanent deficits, 2 mild ischemic strokes, and 3 asymptomatic retroperitoneal hematomas identified by falling hematocrit levels that required no further intervention or treatment.
The large majority of significant postprocedural events after uncomplicated endovascular aneurysm intervention occur within the first 4 hours; these events become less frequent with increasing time. Transfer to a floor bed after 4–12 hours for further observation is reasonable to consider in some patients.
Chad W. Washington, Colin P. Derdeyn, Rajat Dhar, Eric J. Arias, Michael R. Chicoine, DeWitte T. Cross, Ralph G. Dacey Jr., Byung Hee Han, Christopher J. Moran, Keith M. Rich, Ananth K. Vellimana and Gregory J. Zipfel
Studies show that phosphodiesterase-V (PDE-V) inhibition reduces cerebral vasospasm (CVS) and improves outcomes after experimental subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). This study was performed to investigate the safety and effect of sildenafil (an FDA-approved PDE-V inhibitor) on angiographic CVS in SAH patients.
A2-phase, prospective, nonrandomized, human trial was implemented. Subarachnoid hemorrhage patients underwent angiography on Day 7 to assess for CVS. Those with CVS were given 10 mg of intravenous sildenafil in the first phase of the study and 30 mg in the second phase. In both, angiography was repeated 30 minutes after infusion. Safety was assessed by monitoring neurological examination findings and vital signs and for the development of adverse reactions. For angiographic assessment, in a blinded fashion, pre- and post-sildenafil images were graded as “improvement” or “no improvement” in CVS. Unblinded measurements were made between pre- and post-sildenafil angiograms.
Twelve patients received sildenafil; 5 patients received 10 mg and 7 received 30 mg. There were no adverse reactions. There was no adverse effect on heart rate or intracranial pressure. Sildenafil resulted in a transient decline in mean arterial pressure, an average of 17% with a return to baseline in an average of 18 minutes. Eight patients (67%) were found to have a positive angiographic response to sildenafil, 3 (60%) in the low-dose group and 5 (71%) in the high-dose group. The largest degree of vessel dilation was an average of 0.8 mm (range 0–2.1 mm). This corresponded to an average percentage increase in vessel diameter of 62% (range 0%–200%).
The results from this Phase I safety and proof-of-concept trial assessing the use of intravenous sildenafil in patients with CVS show that sildenafil is safe and well tolerated in the setting of SAH. Furthermore, the angiographic data suggest that sildenafil has a positive impact on human CVS.
Jacob K. Greenberg, Ridhima Guniganti, Eric J. Arias, Kshitij Desai, Chad W. Washington, Yan Yan, Hua Weng, Chengjie Xiong, Emily Fondahn, DeWitte T. Cross, Christopher J. Moran, Keith M. Rich, Michael R. Chicoine, Rajat Dhar, Ralph G. Dacey Jr., Colin P. Derdeyn and Gregory J. Zipfel
Despite persisting questions regarding its appropriateness, 30-day readmission is an increasingly common quality metric used to influence hospital compensation in the United States. However, there is currently insufficient evidence to identify which patients are at highest risk for readmission after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). The objective of this study was to identify predictors of 30-day readmission after SAH, to focus preventative efforts, and to provide guidance to funding agencies seeking to risk-adjust comparisons among hospitals.
The authors performed a case-control study of 30-day readmission among aneurysmal SAH patients treated at a single center between 2003 and 2013. To control for geographic distance from the hospital and year of treatment, the authors randomly matched each case (30-day readmission) with approximately 2 SAH controls (no readmission) based on home ZIP code and treatment year. They evaluated variables related to patient demographics, socioeconomic characteristics, comorbidities, presentation severity (e.g., Hunt and Hess grade), and clinical course (e.g., need for gastrostomy or tracheostomy, length of stay). Conditional logistic regression was used to identify significant predictors, accounting for the matched design of the study.
Among 82 SAH patients with unplanned 30-day readmission, the authors matched 78 patients with 153 nonreadmitted controls. Age, demographics, and socioeconomic factors were not associated with readmission. In univariate analysis, multiple variables were significantly associated with readmission, including Hunt and Hess grade (OR 3.0 for Grade IV/V vs I/II), need for gastrostomy placement (OR 2.0), length of hospital stay (OR 1.03 per day), discharge disposition (OR 3.2 for skilled nursing vs other disposition), and Charlson Comorbidity Index (OR 2.3 for score ≥ 2 vs 0). However, the only significant predictor in the multivariate analysis was discharge to a skilled nursing facility (OR 3.2), and the final model was sensitive to criteria used to enter and retain variables. Furthermore, despite the significant association between discharge disposition and readmission, less than 25% of readmitted patients were discharged to a skilled nursing facility.
Although discharge disposition remained significant in multivariate analysis, most routinely collected variables appeared to be weak independent predictors of 30-day readmission after SAH. Consequently, hospitals interested in decreasing readmission rates may consider multifaceted, cost-efficient interventions that can be broadly applied to most if not all SAH patients.