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  • Author or Editor: Albert van der Zwan x
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Eva H. Brilstra, Gabriel J. E. Rinkel, Catharina J. M. Klijn, Albert van der Zwan, Ale Algra, Rob T. H. Lo and Cornelis A. F. Tulleken

Object. If clip application or coil placement for treatment of intracranial aneurysms is not feasible, the parent vessel can be occluded to induce thrombosis of the aneurysm. The Excimer laser—assisted anastomosis technique allows the construction of a high-flow bypass in patients who cannot tolerate such an occlusion. The authors assessed the complications of this procedure and clinical outcomes after the construction of high-flow bypasses in patients with intracranial aneurysms.

Methods. Data were retrospectively collected on patient and aneurysm characteristics, procedural complications, and functional outcomes in 77 patients in whom a high-flow bypass was constructed. Logistic regression analysis was used to quantify the relationships between patient and aneurysm characteristics on the one hand and outcome measures on the other.

Fifty-one patients harbored a giant aneurysm, 24 patients suffered from a ruptured aneurysm, and 35 patients from an unruptured symptomatic aneurysm. In 22 patients (29%; 95% confidence interval [CI] 19–40%) a permanent deficit developed from an operative complication. At a median follow-up period of 2.5 months, 25 patients (32%; 95% CI 22–44%) were dependent or had died; in 10 of these patients (13% of all patients; 95% CI 6–23%) operative complications were the single cause of this poor outcome. Univariate analysis demonstrated that a poor clinical condition before treatment (odds ratio [OR] 4.7; 95% CI 1.7–13.3) and a history of cardiovascular disease (OR 4.1; 95% CI 1–16.2) increased the risk of poor outcome. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that only the clinical condition before treatment was significantly related to outcome (OR 4; 95% CI 1.3–11.9).

Conclusions. In patients with an intracranial aneurysm that cannot be treated by clip application or coil placement, and in whom occlusion of the parent artery cannot be tolerated, the construction of a high-flow bypass should be considered. This procedure carries a considerable risk of complications, but this should be weighed against the disabling or life-threatening effects of compression, the high risk of rupture, and the substantial chance of poor outcome after the rupture of such aneurysms.

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Jochem P. Bremmer, Bon H. Verweij, Catharina J. M. Klijn, Albert van der Zwan, L. Jaap Kappelle and Cornelis A. F. Tulleken


Excimer laser–assisted nonocclusive anastomosis (ELANA) is a technique that can be used for extracranial-to-intracranial (EC-IC) bypasses, without the necessity of temporary occlusion of the donor or recipient artery. Information on predictors of patency of EC-IC bypasses in general and the ELANA bypass in particular is sparse. The authors studied 159 ELANA EC-IC bypasses to find predictors of patency.


From a prospective database of patients who underwent EC-IC bypass surgery, 143 consecutive patients who underwent a total of 159 ELANA bypasses were studied. The associations of patient characteristics, surgical aspects, and technical aspects specific to the ELANA technique with intraoperative and postoperative bypass patency were studied using logistic regression analysis.


At the end of the operation, 146 (92%) of the 159 bypasses were patent. A first attempt to create a bypass was almost 8 times more likely (OR 7.6, 95% CI 2.1–27.5; p = 0.02) to result in a patent bypass than a second attempt. Administration of a small amount of heparin during the operation was also associated with bypass patency (OR 5.2, 95% CI 1.1–24.9; p = 0.04). One hundred twenty-three (77%) of the 159 bypasses were functional at patency assessments during the 1st month after the operation. Older age (OR 1.043 for every year of increase in age, 95% CI 1.010–1.076; p = 0.01), male sex (OR 2.9, 95% CI 1.3–6.5; p = 0.01), and high intraoperative bypass flow (OR 1.017 for every milliliter per minute increase in flow, 95% CI 1.004–1.030; p = 0.01) were associated with postoperative bypass patency.


Attempts to create a second EC-IC ELANA bypass after the first one are more likely to fail, whereas administration of heparin to the patient during the procedure increases the intraoperative bypass patency rate. Postoperative patency results are better in male and in older patients. Intraoperative bypass flow measurements are essential because high bypass flow is an important determinant of postoperative patency.