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Robert W. Ryan, Amir S. Khan, Rebecca Barco and Armen Choulakian

OBJECTIVE

Ruptured blister aneurysms remain challenging lesions for treatment due to their broad, shallow anatomy and thin, fragile wall. Historical challenges with both open microsurgical approaches and intrasaccular endovascular approaches have led to increased use of flow diversion for management of these aneurysms. However, the optimum paradigm, including timing of treatment, use of dual antiplatelet therapy, and number of flow-diverter devices to use remains unknown. The authors describe their experience with ruptured blister aneurysms treated with flow diversion at their institution, and discuss rates of rebleeding and number of devices used.

METHODS

All patients presenting with subarachnoid hemorrhage from a ruptured blister aneurysm and treated with Pipeline flow diversion were identified. Patient demographic data, clinical status and course, need for external ventricular drain (EVD), timing of treatment, and angiographic details and follow-up were recorded.

RESULTS

There were 13 patients identified (11 women and 2 men), and 4 had multiple aneurysms. Two aneurysms were treated on initial angiography, with average time to treatment of 3.1 days for the remainder, after discussion with the family and institution of dual antiplatelet therapy. Device placement was technically successful in all patients, with 2 patients receiving 2 devices and the remainder receiving 1 device. There was 1 intraoperative complication, of a wire perforation causing intracerebral hemorrhage requiring decompressive craniectomy. Three patients had required EVD placement for management of hydrocephalus. There was no rebleeding from the target lesion; however, one patient had worsening intraventricular hemorrhage and another had rupture of an unrecognized additional aneurysm, and both died. Of the other 11 patients, 10 made a good recovery, with 1 remaining in a vegetative state. Nine underwent follow-up angiography, with 5 achieving complete occlusion, 2 with reduced aneurysm size, and 2 requiring retreatment for aneurysm persistence or enlargement. There were no episodes of delayed rupture.

CONCLUSIONS

Pipeline flow diversion is a technically feasible and effective treatment for ruptured blister aneurysms, particularly in good-grade patients without hydrocephalus. Patients with a worse grade on presentation and requiring EVDs may have higher risk for bleeding complications and poor outcome. There was no rebleeding from the target lesion with use of a single device in this series.

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Zahid Hussain Khan, Masoud Nashibi and Seyed Amir Javadi

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Asif A. Khan, Saqib A. Chaudhry, Kamesh Sivagnanam, Ameer E. Hassan, M. Fareed K. Suri and Adnan I. Qureshi

Object

The Carotid Revascularization Endarterectomy versus Stenting Trial (CREST) demonstrated that the risk of the primary composite outcome of stroke, myocardial infarction (MI), or death did not differ significantly in patients with an average surgical risk undergoing carotid artery stenting (CAS) and those undergoing carotid endarterectomy (CEA). However, the cost associated with CAS may limit its broad applicability. The authors' goal in this paper was to determine the cost-effectiveness of CAS with an embolic-protection device versus CEA in patients with moderate to severe carotid artery stenosis who are at average surgical risk.

Methods

The probability of the primary outcome was obtained from the results of the CREST trial. The quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) associated with each treatment modality were estimated by adjusting for the incidence of each quality-adjusted outcome (QALY weights of ipsilateral stroke, MI, death, and postprocedure QALYs). The total cost associated with each intervention was derived from hospitalization cost and cost associated with primary outcomes including stroke, MI, and death in each group. Costs are expressed in US dollars accounting for inflation up to October 2010. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) were estimated for the 4-year period after the procedure. All values are expressed as means and 95% confidence intervals.

Results

The estimated net costs for patients after treatment with CAS and CEA after consideration of the primary outcome were $18,335 and $13,276, respectively, from the definitive presimulation analysis. Postsimulation values were $19,210 (range $18,264–$20,156) and $14,080 (range $13,076–$15,084), respectively. Overall, QALYs for the CAS and CEA groups were 0.712 and 0.702, respectively (ranging from 0.0 [death] to 0.815 [no adverse events]). The estimated ICER for CAS versus CEA treatment was $229,429.

Conclusions

Although the CREST demonstrated equivalent results with CAS (compared with CEA) in patients at average surgical risk with severe carotid artery stenosis, broad applicability of CAS might be limited by the higher cost associated with this procedure.

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Oral Presentations

2010 AANS Annual Meeting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 1–5, 2010