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Krishna C. Joshi, Daniel M. Heiferman, André Beer-Furlan and Demetrius K. Lopes

External carotid artery (ECA) to internal carotid artery (ICA) bypass is a well-established procedure for the treatment of chronic ischemic diseases of the carotid artery. Rarely de novo aneurysms can develop at the site of anastomosis. The treatment of these aneurysms can be very challenging due to various factors, including the presence of graft, previous craniotomy, atherosclerotic vessels, and lack of direct access. In this video the authors report and discuss the management of a right middle cerebral artery (MCA) wide-necked de novo aneurysm by stent-assisted coiling through a retrograde trans-posterior communicating artery access.

The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/MBKolPvOErU.

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Krishna Chaitanya Joshi, Ignacio Larrabide, Ahmed Saied, Nada Elsaid, Hector Fernandez and Demetrius K. Lopes

OBJECTIVE

The authors sought to validate the use of a software-based simulation for preassessment of braided self-expanding stents in the treatment of wide-necked intracranial aneurysms.

METHODS

This was a retrospective, observational, single-center study of 13 unruptured and ruptured intracranial aneurysms treated with braided self-expanding stents. Pre- and postprocedural angiographic studies were analyzed. ANKYRAS software was used to compare the following 3 variables: the manufacturer-given nominal length (NL), software-calculated simulated length (SL), and the actual measured length (ML) of the stent. Appropriate statistical methods were used to draw correlations among the 3 lengths.

RESULTS

In this study, data obtained in 13 patients treated with braided self-expanding stents were analyzed. Data for the 3 lengths were collected for all patients. Error discrepancy was calculated by mean squared error (NL to ML −22.2; SL to ML −6.14, p < 0.05), mean absolute error (NL to ML 3.88; SL to ML −1.84, p < 0.05), and mean error (NL to ML −3.81; SL to ML −1.22, p < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS

The ML was usually less than the NL given by the manufacturer, indicating significant change in length in most cases. Computational software-based simulation for preassessment of the braided self-expanding stents is a safe and effective way for accurately calculating the change in length to aid in choosing the right-sized stent for optimal placement in complex intracranial vasculature.

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Mena G. Kerolus, Joonho Chung, Stephen A. Munich, Yoshikazu Matsuda, Hideo Okada and Demetrius K. Lopes

Transvenous embolization is an effective method for treating dural arteriovenous fistulas (DAVFs) of the transverse-sigmoid sinus (TSS). However, in cases of complicated DAVFs, it is difficult to preserve the patency of the dural sinus. The authors describe the technical details of a new reconstructive technique using transvenous balloon-assisted Onyx embolization as another treatment option in a patient with an extensive and complex DAVF of the left TSS.

A microcatheter and compliant balloon catheter were navigated into the left internal jugular vein and placed at the distal end of the DAVF in the transverse sinus. The microcatheter was placed between the vessel wall of the TSS and the balloon. After the balloon was fully inflated, Onyx-18 was injected at the periphery of the balloon in a slow, controlled, progressive, stepwise manner; the balloon and microcatheter were simultaneously withdrawn toward the sigmoid sinus, with Onyx encompassing the entirety of the complex DAVF. The Onyx refluxed into multiple arterial feeders in a distal-to-proximal step-by-step manner, ultimately resulting in an Onyx tunnel. The final angiography study revealed complete obliteration of the DAVF and patency of the TSS.

The Onyx tunnel, or reconstructive transvenous balloon-assisted Onyx embolization technique, may be an effective treatment option for large, complex DAVFs of the TSS. This technique may provide another option to facilitate the complete obliteration of the DAVF while preserving the functional sinus.

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Hideo Okada, Yoshikazu Matsuda, Joonho Chung, R. Webster Crowley and Demetrius K. Lopes

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William J. Mack, Louis J. Kim, Demetrius K. Lopes and J Mocco

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Yoshikazu Matsuda, Hideo Okada, Joonho Chung, R. Webster Crowley and Demetrius K. Lopes

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis is sometimes fatal. The standard treatment for sinus thrombosis is anticoagulation, but endovascular intervention must be considered when medical treatment fails. Mechanical thrombectomy is usually required when a large clot burden exits. Unfortunately, in sinus thrombosis attributable to a clot burden larger than that in an intracranial artery, the conventional technique used for intraarterial acute stroke intervention with a stent retriever and/or aspiration is not very effective. The authors describe here their endovascular approach to mechanical thrombectomy for sinus thrombosis using aspiration combined with angioplasty balloon support.

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Hideo Okada, Yoshikazu Matsuda, Joonho Chung, R. Webster Crowley and Demetrius K. Lopes

Mechanical thrombectomy with stentriever and/or aspiration is the new gold standard for the treatment of acute strokes with large-vessel occlusion. As many as 20% of cases remain refractory to current stentriever and/or aspiration devices. “Saddle clots” obstructing a bifurcation may be a particular challenge for recanalization with conventional techniques and devices. The authors describe an alternative technique to bifurcation occlusions resistant to the conventional mechanical thrombectomy approach in which they simultaneously deployed 2 stentrievers into both branches of an occluded bifurcation. This stentriever Y-configuration was very effective in managing a challenging intracranial bifurcation occlusion.

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Tibor Becske, Matthew B. Potts, Maksim Shapiro, David F. Kallmes, Waleed Brinjikji, Isil Saatci, Cameron G. McDougall, István Szikora, Giuseppe Lanzino, Christopher J. Moran, Henry H. Woo, Demetrius K. Lopes, Aaron L. Berez, Daniel J. Cher, Adnan H. Siddiqui, Elad I. Levy, Felipe C. Albuquerque, David J. Fiorella, Zsolt Berentei, Miklós Marosföi, Saruhan H. Cekirge and Peter K. Nelson

OBJECTIVE

The long-term effectiveness of endovascular treatment of large and giant wide-neck aneurysms using traditional endovascular techniques has been disappointing, with high recanalization and re-treatment rates. Flow diversion with the Pipeline Embolization Device (PED) has been recently used as a stand-alone therapy for complex aneurysms, showing significant improvement in effectiveness while demonstrating a similar safety profile to stent-supported coil treatment. However, relatively little is known about its long-term safety and effectiveness. Here the authors report on the 3-year safety and effectiveness of flow diversion with the PED in a prospective cohort of patients with large and giant internal carotid artery aneurysms enrolled in the Pipeline for Uncoilable or Failed Aneurysms (PUFS) trial.

METHODS

The PUFS trial is a prospective study of 107 patients with 109 aneurysms treated with the PED. Primary effectiveness and safety end points were demonstrated based on independently monitored 180-day clinical and angiographic data. Patients were enrolled in a long-term follow-up protocol including 1-, 3-, and 5-year clinical and imaging follow-up. In this paper, the authors report the midstudy (3-year) effectiveness and safety data.

RESULTS

At 3 years posttreatment, 74 subjects with 76 aneurysms underwent catheter angiography as required per protocol. Overall, complete angiographic aneurysm occlusion was observed in 71 of these 76 aneurysms (93.4% cure rate). Five aneurysms were re-treated, using either coils or additional PEDs, for failure to occlude, and 3 of these 5 were cured by the 3-year follow-up. Angiographic cure with one or two treatments of Pipeline embolization alone was therefore achieved in 92.1%. No recanalization of a previously completely occluded aneurysm was noted on the 3-year angiograms. There were 3 (2.6%) delayed device- or aneurysm-related serious adverse events, none of which led to permanent neurological sequelae. No major or minor late-onset hemorrhagic or ischemic cerebrovascular events or neurological deaths were observed in the 6-month through 3-year posttreatment period. Among 103 surviving patients, 85 underwent functional outcome assessment in which modified Rankin Scale scores of 0–1 were demonstrated in 80 subjects.

CONCLUSIONS

Pipeline embolization is safe and effective in the treatment of complex large and giant aneurysms of the intracranial internal carotid artery. Unlike more traditional endovascular treatments, flow diversion results in progressive vascular remodeling that leads to complete aneurysm obliteration over longer-term follow-up without delayed aneurysm recanalization and/or growth.

Clinical trial registration no.: NCT00777088 (clinicaltrials.gov)

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Daniel H. Sahlein, Mohammad Fouladvand, Tibor Becske, Isil Saatci, Cameron G. McDougall, István Szikora, Giuseppe Lanzino, Christopher J. Moran, Henry H. Woo, Demetrius K. Lopes, Aaron L. Berez, Daniel J. Cher, Adnan H. Siddiqui, Elad I. Levy, Felipe C. Albuquerque, David J. Fiorella, Zsolt Berentei, Miklos Marosfoi, Saruhan H. Cekirge, David F. Kallmes and Peter K. Nelson

OBJECT

Neuroophthalmological morbidity is commonly associated with large and giant cavernous and supraclinoid internal carotid artery (ICA) aneurysms. The authors sought to evaluate the neuroophthalmological outcomes after treatment of these aneurysms with the Pipeline Embolization Device (PED).

METHODS

The Pipeline for Uncoilable or Failed Aneurysms (PUFS) trial was an international, multicenter prospective trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of the PED. All patients underwent complete neuroophthalmological examinations both before the PED procedure and at a 6-month follow-up. All examinations were performed for the purpose of this study and according to study criteria.

RESULTS

In total, 108 patients were treated in the PUFS trial, 98 of whom had complete neuroophthalmological follow-up. Of the patients with complete follow-up, 39 (40%) presented with a neuroophthalmological baseline deficit that was presumed to be attributable to the aneurysm, and patients with these baseline deficits had significantly larger aneurysms. In 25 of these patients (64%), the baseline deficit showed at least some improvement 6 months after PED treatment, whereas in 1 patient (2.6%), the deficits only worsened. In 5 patients (5%), new deficits had developed at the 6-month follow-up, while in another 6 patients (6%), deficits that were not originally assumed to be related to the aneurysm had improved by that time. A history of diabetes was associated with failure of the baseline deficits to improve after the treatment. The aneurysm maximum diameter was significantly larger in patients with a new deficit or a worse baseline deficit at 6 months postprocedure.

CONCLUSIONS

Patients treated with the PED for large and giant ICA aneurysms had excellent neuroophthalmological outcomes 6 months after the procedure, with deficits improving in most of the patients, very few deficits worsening, and few new deficits developing.

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Stephan A. Munich, Lee A. Tan, Kiffon M. Keigher, Michael Chen, Roham Moftakhar and Demetrius K. Lopes

Object

Vertebrobasilar fusiform aneurysms (VFAs) are rare lesions characterized by abnormal dilation and tortuosity of the vertebral and/or basilar arteries. Untreated, these aneurysms have a tendency to progress, often resulting in neurological symptoms or rupture leading to subarachnoid hemorrhage. The microsurgical treatment of these lesions can be difficult due to their location and the circumferential involvement of the arteries. These features make microsurgical treatment prone to high morbidity. The Pipeline Embolization Device (PED) has gained popularity for the treatment of aneurysms of the internal carotid artery. Its use in the posterior circulation has been limited, likely due to a fear of perforating artery occlusion.

Methods

The authors retrospectively reviewed their database of patients treated with the PED and identified 12 patients who had VFAs. The clinical features, complications, and outcomes of these patients were analyzed.

Results

At an average follow-up of 11 months, the mean modified Rankin Scale score was 1.9. Complete aneurysm occlusion was seen in 90% of the patients with radiographic follow-up. Three patients suffered new neurological deficits postoperatively. One of these patients died, while the remaining 2 demonstrated significant clinical improvement at follow-up.

Conclusions

With attention to the anatomy of perforating arteries, staged contralateral vertebral artery sacrifice, and adequate platelet inhibition, PED may be an effective treatment option—alone or in a hybrid construct with stents of less coverage for VFAs—with an acceptable complication rate.