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Miikka Korja, Riku Kivisaari, Behnam Rezai Jahromi and Hanna Lehto

OBJECTIVE

Large consecutive series on the size and location of ruptured intracranial aneurysms (RIAs) are limited, and therefore it has been difficult to estimate population-wide effects of size-based treatment strategies of unruptured intracranial aneurysms. The authors' aim was to define the size and location of RIAs in patients diagnosed with subarachnoid hemorrhage due to aneurysm rupture in a high-volume academic center.

METHODS

Consecutive patients admitted to a large nonprofit academic hospital with saccular RIAs between 1995 and 2009 were identified, and the size, location, and multiplicity of RIAs were defined and reported by patient sex.

RESULTS

In the study cohort of 1993 patients (61% women) with saccular RIAs, the 4 most common locations of RIAs were the middle cerebral (32%), anterior communicating (32%), posterior communicating (14%), and pericallosal arteries (5%). However, proportional distribution of RIAs varied considerably by sex; for example, RIAs of the anterior communicating artery were more frequently found in men than in women. Anterior circulation RIAs accounted for 90% of all RIAs, and 30% of the patients had multiple intracranial aneurysms. The median size (measured as maximum diameter) of all RIAs was 7 mm (range 1–43 mm), but the size varied considerably by location. For example, RIAs of the ophthalmic artery had a median size of 11 mm, whereas the median size of RIAs of the pericallosal artery was 6 mm. Of all RIAs, 68% were smaller than 10 mm in maximum diameter.

CONCLUSIONS

In this large consecutive series of RIAs, 83% of all RIAs were found in 4 anterior circulation locations. The majority of RIAs were small, but the size and location varied considerably by sex. The presented data may be of help in defining effective prevention strategies.

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Juri Kivelev, Mika Niemelä, Riku Kivisaari and Juha Hernesniemi

Object

Intraventricular cavernomas (IVCs) occur in only 2–10% of patients with cerebral cavernomas. Reports concerning IVC are scarce and are limited mostly to sporadic case reports. In this paper, the authors present a series of 12 patients with IVCs that were treated at a single neurosurgical department. In addition, the authors reviewed the literature.

Methods

All clinical data were analyzed retrospectively. Follow-up questionnaires were sent to all patients. Outcome was assessed using the Glasgow Outcome Scale. The authors also conducted a PubMed search and found 77 cases of IVC.

Results

The patients' median age was 47 years, and the male/female ratio was 2:1. A cavernoma occurred in the lateral ventricle in 6 patients, in another 5 it was in the fourth ventricle, and 1 had a lesion in the third ventricle. Almost all patients presented with acute headache on admission and in more than half, the symptoms were related to cavernoma bleeding. In total, 8 rebleedings occurred in 5 patients during a median of 0.4 years. Three patients with a cavernoma of the fourth ventricle presented with a cranial nerve deficit. In 8 cases, a cavernoma was surgically treated an average of 1.3 years after the diagnosis. Only 1 patient underwent surgery in the acute phase after a major intraventricular/intracerebral hemorrhage. The median follow-up time was 2 years. No patient was lost to follow-up, and no patient died. In total, on follow-up 9 patients improved and 3 had a persistent neurological deficit, of which 2 existed before surgery.

Conclusions

In the present series, the IVCs had a high tendency for rehemorrhage. Surgery is advocated when hemorrhages are frequent, and the mass effect causes progressive neurological deficits. Microsurgical removal of the IVC is safe, but in the fourth ventricle it can carry increased risk for cranial nerve deficits.

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Justiina Huhtakangas, Martin Lehecka, Hanna Lehto, Behnam Rezai Jahromi, Mika Niemelä and Riku Kivisaari

OBJECTIVE

Occlusive treatment of posterior communicating artery (PCoA) aneurysms has been seen as a fairly uncomplicated procedure. The objective here was to determine the radiological and clinical outcome of patients after PCoA aneurysm rupture and treatment and to evaluate the risk factors for impaired outcome.

METHODS

In a retrospective clinical follow-up study, data were collected from 620 consecutive patients who had been treated for ruptured PCoA aneurysms at a single center between 1980 and 2014. The follow-up was a minimum of 1 year after treatment or until death.

RESULTS

Of the 620 patients, 83% were treated with microsurgical clipping, 8% with endovascular coiling, 2% with the two procedures combined, 1% with indirect surgical methods, and 6% with conservative methods. The most common procedural complications were treatment-related brain infarctions (15%). The occurrence of artery occlusions (10% microsurgical, 8% endovascular) was higher than expected. Most patients made a good recovery at 1 year after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (modified Rankin Scale [mRS] score 0–2: 386 patients [62%]). A fairly small proportion of patients were left severely disabled (mRS score 4–5: 27 patients [4%]). Among all patients, 20% died during the 1st year. Independent risk factors for an unfavorable outcome, according to the multivariable analysis, were poor preoperative clinical condition, intracerebral or subdural hematoma due to aneurysm rupture, age over 65 years, artery occlusion on postoperative angiography, occlusive treatment–related ischemia, delayed cerebral vasospasm, and hydrocephalus requiring a shunt.

CONCLUSIONS

Even though most patients made a good recovery after PCoA aneurysm rupture and treatment during the 1st year, the occlusive treatment–related complications were higher than expected and caused morbidity even among initially good-grade patients. Occlusive treatment of ruptured PCoA aneurysms seems to be a high-risk procedure, even in a high-volume neurovascular center.

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Päivi Koroknay-Pál, Hanna Lehto, Mika Niemelä, Riku Kivisaari and Juha Hernesniemi

Object

Population-based data on pediatric patients with aneurysms are limited. The aim of this study is to clarify the characteristics and long-term outcomes of pediatric patients with aneurysms.

Methods

All pediatric patients (≤ 18 years old) with aneurysms among the 8996 aneurysm patients treated at the Department of Neurosurgery in Helsinki from 1937 to 2009 were followed from admission to the end of 2010.

Results

There were 114 pediatric patients with 130 total aneurysms during the study period. The mean patient age was 14.5 years (range 3 months to 18 years). The male:female ratio was 3:2. Eighty-nine patients (78%) presented with subarachnoid hemorrhage. The majority of the aneurysms (116 [89%]) were in the anterior circulation, and the most common location was the internal carotid artery bifurcation (36 [28%]). The average aneurysm diameter was 11 mm (range 2–55 mm) with 16 giant aneurysms (12%). Eighty aneurysms (62%) were treated microsurgically, and 37 (28%) were treated conservatively due to poor medical and neurological status of the patient or due to technical reasons during the early years of the patient series. No connective tissue disorders common to pediatric aneurysm patients were diagnosed in this series, with the exception of 1 patient with tuberous sclerosis complex. The mean follow-up duration was 24.8 years (range 0–55.8 years). At the end of follow-up, 71 patients (62%) had a good outcome, 3 (3%) were dependent, and 40 (35%) had died. Twenty-seven deaths (68%) were assessed to be aneurysm-related. Factors correlating with a favorable long-term outcome were good neurological condition of the patient on admission, aneurysm location in the anterior circulation, complete aneurysm closure, and absence of vasospasm. Six patients developed symptomatic de novo aneurysms after a median of 25 years (range 11–37 years). Fourteen patients (12%) had a family history of aneurysms. There was no increased incidence for cardiovascular diseases in long-term follow-up.

Conclusions

Most aneurysms were ruptured and of medium size. Internal carotid artery bifurcation was the most frequent location of the aneurysms. There was a male predominance of pediatric patients with aneurysms. Most patients experienced good recovery, with 91% of the long-term survivors living at home independently without assistance and meaningfully employed. Altogether, almost a third of these patients finished high school and one-fifth had a college or university degree. Pediatric patients had a tendency to develop de novo aneurysms.

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Elina Koskela, Johanna Pekkola, Riku Kivisaari, Tero Kivelä, Juha Hernesniemi, Kirsi Setälä and Aki Laakso

Object

Terson's syndrome (TS) is a vitreous hemorrhage in association with subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Its diagnosis is often delayed, which may result in vision loss secondary to treatable conditions. Methods to hasten early diagnosis and consequent ophthalmic referral are desirable. The aims of this study were 1) to assess the specificity and sensitivity of conventional head CT for diagnosing TS in patients with aneurysmal SAH (aSAH); and 2) to determine the incidence of TS and its association with age, sex, aSAH severity, and overall mortality.

Methods

Patients admitted to Helsinki University Central Hospital who underwent surgery or endovascular treatment for a ruptured intracranial aneurysm during 2011 were participants in this prospective study. They underwent serial dilated fundoscopic examinations during a 6-month period. Two radiologists independently reviewed ocular findings suggestive of TS on conventional CT head scans obtained in all patients as a routine diagnostic procedure. Associations between TS and relevant clinical, radiological, and demographic data were analyzed with uni- and multivariate logistic regression.

Results

Of 121 participants, 13 (11%) presented with TS, and another 22 (18%) with intraretinal hemorrhages. For reviewing CT head scans, the overall observed agreement between the 2 raters was 96% (116 of 121 cases), with a substantial κ of 0.69 (95% CI 0.56–0.82). The sensitivity of the CT findings for TS was 42%, and the specificity was 97%. Associations of the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies (WFNS) and Hunt and Hess grades on admission, the presence of intracerebral hemorrhage, female sex, and aneurysm length with TS were all statistically significant. Logistic regression demonstrated that sex and WFNS grade were independently associated with TS and provided the best fit to the data.

Conclusions

Routinely looking for TS findings in CT head scans may prove valuable in clinical practice. Terson's syndrome is associated with female sex and poor clinical condition on admission.