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Harry J. Cloft, David F. Kallmes, Michelle H. Kallmes, Jonas H. Goldstein, Mary E. Jensen, and Jacques E. Dion

Object. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of cerebral saccular aneurysms in patients with carotid artery and/or vertebral artery (VA) fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD).

Methods. A metaanalysis was performed using data from 17 previously reported series of patients with internal carotid artery (ICA) and/or VA FMD that included information on the prevalence of cerebral aneurysms. In addition, the authors retrospectively evaluated their own series of 117 patients with ICA and/or VA FMD to determine the prevalence of cerebral aneurysms. The metaanalysis of the 17 earlier series, which included 498 patients, showed a 7.6 ± 2.5% prevalence of incidental, asymptomatic aneurysms in patients with ICA and/or VA FMD. In the authors' series of patients with FMD, 6.3 ± 4.9% of patients harbored an incidental, asymptomatic aneurysm. When the authors' series was combined with those included in the metaanalysis, the prevalence was found to be 7.3 ± 2.2%. The prevalence of aneurysms in the general population would have to be greater than 5.6% for there to be no statistically significant difference (chi-square test, p < 0.05) when compared with this 7.3% prevalence in patients with FMD.

Conclusions. The prevalence of intracranial aneurysms in patients with cervical ICA and/or VA FMD is approximately 7%, which is not nearly as high as the 21 to 51% prevalence that has been previously reported.