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Susumu Miyamoto, Takeshi Funaki, Koji Iihara and Jun C. Takahashi

Object

The authors evaluated the efficacy of a new flow reduction strategy for giant partially thrombosed upper basilar artery (BA) aneurysms, for which proximal parent artery occlusion is not always effective.

Methods

Eight consecutive patients with severely symptomatic, partially thrombosed, giant upper BA aneurysms were treated with a tailored flow reduction strategy, or received conservative therapies. The flow reduction strategy comprised isolation of several branches from the upper BA at their origins with bypasses in addition to parent artery occlusion.

Results

The median follow-up period of all 8 patients was 15.0 months (range 4–31 months). In 6 patients treated with flow reduction, the mean decrease in residual blood lumen was −10.7 mm (95% CI −19.7 to −1.7 mm; p = 0.029) and the mean decrease in diameter of the aneurysms was −11.5 mm (95% CI −25.1 to 2.1 mm; p = 0.082). Complete or virtually complete thrombosis was achieved in all but 1 aneurysm (83%) and shrinkage was observed in 4 (67%). In those in whom complete or virtually complete thrombosis was achieved, significant shrinkage of the aneurysm was observed (mean decrease in diameter −14.8 mm; 95% CI −28.8 to −0.8 mm; p = 0.043). Improvement or stabilization of symptoms occurred in 67% of the patients who received flow reduction treatment. Both patients who received conservative treatment had unfavorable outcomes.

Conclusions

The flow reduction strategy is effective at promoting complete thrombosis of the aneurysm. This strategy can also induce shrinkage of the aneurysm if successful thrombosis is achieved. Although the neurological outcome of the treatment appears favorable considering its intractable nature, further study of the treatment is necessary to confirm its clinical efficacy and safety.

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Jun C. Takahashi, Takeshi Funaki, Kiyohiro Houkin, Satoshi Kuroda, Miki Fujimura, Yasutake Tomata and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECTIVE

Here, the authors aimed to determine whether the presence of cerebral hemodynamic failure predicts subsequent bleeding attacks and how it correlates with the effect of direct bypass surgery in hemorrhagic moyamoya disease.

METHODS

Data from the Japanese Adult Moyamoya (JAM) Trial were used in this study: 158 hemispheres in 79 patients. A newly formed expert panel evaluated the SPECT results submitted at trial enrollment and classified the cortical hemodynamic state of the middle cerebral artery territory of each hemisphere into one of the following three groups: SPECT stage (SS) 0 as normal, SS1 as decreased cerebrovascular reserve (CVR), and SS2 as decreased CVR with decreased baseline blood flow. In the nonsurgical cohort of the JAM Trial, the subsequent hemorrhage rate during the 5-year follow-up was compared between the SS0 (hemodynamic failure negative) and SS1+2 (hemodynamic failure positive) groups. The effect of direct or combined direct/indirect bypass surgery on hemorrhage prevention was examined in each subgroup.

RESULTS

The hemodynamic grade was SS0 in 59 (37.3%) hemispheres, SS1 in 87 (55.1%), and SS2 in 12 (7.6%). In the nonsurgical cohort, subsequent hemorrhage rates in the SS0 and SS1+2 groups were 12 cases per 1000 person-years and 67 cases per 1000 person-years, respectively. Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed that hemorrhagic events were significantly more common in the SS1+2 group (p = 0.019, log-rank test). Cox regression analysis showed that hemodynamic failure was an independent risk factor for subsequent hemorrhage (HR 5.37, 95% CI 1.07–27.02). In the SS1+2 subgroup, bypass surgery significantly suppressed hemorrhagic events during 5 years (p = 0.001, HR 0.16, 95% CI 0.04–0.57), with no significant effect in the SS0 group (p = 0.655, HR 1.56, 95% CI 0.22–11.10). Examination of effect modification revealed that the effect of surgery tended to differ nonsignificantly between these two subgroups (p = 0.056).

CONCLUSIONS

Hemodynamic failure is an independent risk factor for subsequent hemorrhage in hemorrhagic moyamoya disease. Direct bypass surgery showed a significant preventive effect in the hemodynamically impaired hemispheres. Thus, hemodynamic failure, as well as previously proposed factors such as choroidal anastomosis, should be considered for the surgical indication in hemorrhagic moyamoya disease.

Clinical trial registration no.: C000000166 (umin.ac.jp)

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Takeshi Funaki, Jun C. Takahashi, Kiyohiro Houkin, Satoshi Kuroda, Miki Fujimura, Yasutake Tomata and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECTIVE

Following hemorrhagic stroke in moyamoya disease, de novo intracranial hemorrhage can occur in the previously unaffected nonhemorrhagic hemisphere. In the present analysis the authors intended to determine whether the presence in the nonhemorrhagic hemisphere of choroidal collateral vessels, which have been the focus of attention as a source of bleeding, affects the risk of de novo hemorrhage.

METHODS

The subject of focus of the present cohort study was the nonhemorrhagic hemispheres of adult patients with hemorrhagic moyamoya disease enrolled in the Japan Adult Moyamoya Trial and allocated to the nonsurgical arm. The variable of interest was the presence of choroidal collaterals (also termed choroidal anastomoses), identified with baseline angiography and represented by a connection (anastomosis) between the anterior or posterior choroidal arteries and the medullary arteries. The outcome measure was de novo hemorrhage during the 5-year follow-up period, assessed in all nonhemorrhagic hemispheres. The incidence of de novo hemorrhage in the collateral-positive and -negative groups was compared.

RESULTS

Choroidal collaterals were present in 15 of 36 (41.7%) nonhemorrhagic hemispheres analyzed. The overall annual risk of de novo hemorrhage was 2.0%. Three de novo hemorrhages occurred in the collateral-positive group, whereas no hemorrhage occurred in the collateral-negative group. The annual risk of de novo hemorrhage was significantly higher in the collateral-positive group than in the collateral-negative group (5.8% per year vs 0% per year; p = 0.017). All hemorrhage sites corresponded to the distribution of choroidal collaterals.

CONCLUSIONS

The present preliminary results suggest that the presence of choroidal collaterals affects the risk of de novo hemorrhage in the nonhemorrhagic hemisphere, subject to verification in larger studies. Further studies are needed to determine the optimal treatment strategy for nonhemorrhagic hemispheres and asymptomatic patients.

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Miki Fujimura, Takeshi Funaki, Kiyohiro Houkin, Jun C. Takahashi, Satoshi Kuroda, Yasutake Tomata, Teiji Tominaga and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECTIVE

This study was performed to identify the angiographic features of hemorrhagic-onset moyamoya disease (MMD) in comparison with those of patients with ischemic-onset MMD.

METHODS

This case-control study compared the data set of the Japan Adult Moyamoya (JAM) Trial with the angiographic data of adult patients with ischemic-onset MMD. The authors analyzed angiograms obtained at onset, classifying the collaterals into 3 subtypes: lenticulostriate anastomosis, thalamic anastomosis, and choroidal anastomosis. They then compared the extent of these collaterals, as indicated by the collateral development grade from 0 to 2 in each subtype, between the JAM Trial group and the ischemic-onset group. They also compared the involvement of the posterior cerebral artery (PCA) and Suzuki’s angiographic staging between each group.

RESULTS

Among 89 ischemic-onset patients, 103 symptomatic hemispheres in 80 patients were analyzed and compared with 75 hemorrhagic hemispheres from the JAM Trial. The hemorrhagic-onset patients showed a significantly higher proportion of thalamic anastomosis (p = 0.043) and choroidal anastomosis (< 0.001), as indicated by grade 2 in each subtype, compared with ischemic-onset patients. Suzuki’s angiographic staging was significantly higher in the hemorrhagic group (< 0.038). There was no difference in the extent of lenticulostriate anastomosis and PCA involvement between the groups.

CONCLUSIONS

In adult MMD, the characteristic pattern of the abnormal vascular networks at the base of the brain is different between each onset type. In light of the more prominent development of thalamic and choroidal anastomosis in the JAM Trial group in the present study, development of these collaterals, especially the choroidal collateral extending beyond the lateral ventricle, may play a critical role in hemorrhagic presentation in MMD.

Clinical trial registration no. C000000166 (http://www.umin.ac.jp/ctr/index.htm)

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Takeshi Funaki, Jun C. Takahashi, Kiyohiro Houkin, Satoshi Kuroda, Shigekazu Takeuchi, Miki Fujimura, Yasutake Tomata and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECTIVE

Choroidal collateral vessels typical of moyamoya disease have received attention as a potential bleeding source. The authors’ previous angiographic cross-sectional analysis suggested a possible association between choroidal collaterals and posterior hemorrhage, indicating a high risk for rebleeding. The present longitudinal analysis is intended to determine whether choroidal collaterals are a predictor of rebleeding in hemorrhagic moyamoya disease.

METHODS

The Japan Adult Moyamoya Trial group designed an ancillary cohort study using 5-year follow-up data on 37 patients included in the nonsurgical arm of the original randomized controlled trial and compared the rebleeding rate of those with and those without choroidal collaterals, represented by the connection between the anterior or posterior choroidal arteries and the medullary arteries. An expert panel determined whether a choroidal collateral was present in each patient through the measurement of baseline angiography studies. The rebleeding rate comparison was adjusted for age, diagnosis of hypertension, and involvement of the posterior cerebral artery.

RESULTS

Choroidal collaterals were present in 21 patients (56.8%). The rebleeding rate was 13.1% per year in the collateral-positive group as compared with 1.3% in the negative group (p = 0.008, log-rank test). The adjusted hazard ratio for rebleeding in the collateral-positive group relative to the negative group remained statistically significant (HR 11.10, 95% CI 1.37–89.91). Radiographic assessment of the collateral-positive group revealed good correspondence between the distribution of collaterals and rebleeding sites.

CONCLUSIONS

Results of this study suggest that choroidal collaterals are a bleeding source with a high risk for hemorrhagic recurrence and a predictor of rebleeding in hemorrhagic moyamoya disease.

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Takeshi Funaki, Jun C. Takahashi, Kiyohiro Houkin, Satoshi Kuroda, Shigekazu Takeuchi, Miki Fujimura, Yasutake Tomata and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECTIVE

In this paper, the authors set out to identify the angiographic features of moyamoya disease with posterior hemorrhage, which is a strong predictor of rebleeding.

METHODS

This cross-sectional study used the data set of the Japan Adult Moyamoya Trial (clinical trial registration no.: C000000166 [www.umin.ac.jp/ctr/index.htm]). The panel designed the ancillary measurement of angiography at onset, classifying the collateral vessels into 3 subtypes: lenticulostriate anastomosis, thalamic anastomosis, and choroidal anastomosis. The association between each collateral and the hemorrhage site (anterior vs posterior) was assessed in the hemorrhagic hemisphere by using multivariate adjustment for potential confounders, including age, sex, and involvement of the posterior cerebral artery (PCA). The association was confirmed through topographical analysis of bleeding points.

RESULTS

Among the 80 participants, 75 hemorrhagic hemispheres of 75 patients were analyzed. Lenticulostriate anastomosis was detected in 21 (28.0%) hemorrhagic hemispheres, thalamic anastomosis in 22 (29.3%), and choroidal anastomosis in 35 (46.7%). Choroidal anastomosis was a factor associated with posterior hemorrhage (OR 2.77 [95% CI 1.08–7.10], p = 0.034) and remained statistically significant after the multivariate adjustment (OR 2.66 [95% CI 1.00–7.07], p = 0.049). PCA involvement was also associated with posterior hemorrhage in both univariate and multivariate analyses. Topographical analysis revealed good correspondence between bleeding points associated with positive choroidal anastomosis and the anatomical distribution of the choroidal arteries, including the thalamus and the wall of the atrium.

CONCLUSIONS

Choroidal anastomosis and PCA involvement are characteristic of posterior hemorrhage in moyamoya disease. Choroidal anastomosis might be considered a potential source of posterior hemorrhage at high risk of rebleeding.

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Takeshi Funaki, Jun C. Takahashi, Kazumichi Yoshida, Yasushi Takagi, Yasutaka Fushimi, Takayuki Kikuchi, Yohei Mineharu, Tomohisa Okada, Takaaki Morimoto and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECT

The authors’ aim in this paper was to determine whether periventricular anastomosis, a novel term for the abnormal collateral vessels typical of moyamoya disease, is reliably measured with MR angiography and is associated with intracranial hemorrhage.

METHODS

This cross-sectional study sampled consecutive patients with moyamoya disease or moyamoya syndrome at a single institution. Periventricular anastomoses were detected using MR angiography images reformatted as sliding-thin-slab maximum-intensity-projection coronal images and were scored according to 3 subtypes: lenticulostriate, thalamic, and choroidal types. The association between periventricular anastomosis and hemorrhagic presentation at onset was evaluated using multivariate analyses.

RESULTS

Of 136 eligible patients, 122 were analyzed. Eighteen (14.8%) patients presented with intracranial hemorrhage with neurological symptoms at onset. Intra- and interrater agreement for rating of the periventricular anastomosis score was good (κw = 0.65 and 0.70, respectively). The prevalence of hemorrhagic presentation increased with the periventricular anastomosis score: 2.8% for Score 0, 8.8% for Score 1, 18.9% for Score 2, and 46.7% for Score 3 (p < 0.01 for trend). Univariate analysis revealed that age (p = 0.02) and periventricular anastomosis score (p < 0.01) were factors tentatively associated with hemorrhagic presentation. The score remained statistically significant after adjustment for age (OR 3.38 [95% CI 1.84–7.00]).

CONCLUSIONS

The results suggest that periventricular anastomosis detected with MR angiography can be scored with good intra- and interrater reliability and is associated with hemorrhagic presentation at onset in moyamoya disease. The clinical utility of periventricular anastomosis as a predictor for hemorrhage should be validated in further prospective studies.

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Kazumichi Yoshida, Ryu Fukumitsu, Yoshitaka Kurosaki, Takeshi Funaki, Takayuki Kikuchi, Jun C. Takahashi, Yasushi Takagi, Sen Yamagata and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECT

The purpose of the present study was to investigate the association between carotid artery (CA) expansive remodeling (ER) and symptoms of cerebral ischemia.

METHODS

One hundred twenty-two consecutive CAs scheduled for CA endarterectomy (CEA) or CA stent placement (CAS) were retrospectively studied. After excluding 22 CAs (2 were contraindicated for MRI, 8 had near-occlusion, 6 had poor image quality, and 6 had restenosis after CEA or CAS), there were 100 CAs (100 patients) included in the final analysis. The study included 50 symptomatic patients (mean age 73.6 ± 8.9 years, 6 women, mean stenosis 68.5% ± 21.3%) and 50 asymptomatic patients (mean age 72.0 ± 5.9 years, 5 women, mean stenosis 79.4% ± 8.85%). Expansive remodeling was defined as enlargement of the internal carotid artery (ICA) with outward plaque growth. The ER ratio was calculated by dividing the maximum distance between the lumen and the outer borders of the plaque perpendicular to the axis of the ICA by the maximal luminal diameter of the distal ICA at a region unaffected by atherosclerosis using long-axis, high-resolution MRI.

RESULTS

The ER ratio of the atherosclerotic CA was significantly greater than that of normal physiological expansion (carotid bulb; p < 0.01). The ER ratio of symptomatic CA stenosis (median 1.94, interquartile range [IQR] 1.58–2.23) was significantly greater than that of asymptomatic CA stenosis (median 1.52, IQR 1.34–1.81; p = 0.0001). When the cutoff value of the ER ratio was set to 1.88, the sensitivity and specificity to detect symptoms were 0.6 and 0.78, respectively. The ER ratio of symptomatic patients was consistently high regardless of the degree of stenosis.

CONCLUSIONS

There was a significant correlation between ER ratio and ischemic symptoms. The ER ratio might be a potential indicator of vulnerable plaque, which requires further validation by prospective observational study of asymptomatic patients.

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Takeshi Funaki, Jun C. Takahashi, Yasushi Takagi, Takayuki Kikuchi, Kazumichi Yoshida, Takafumi Mitsuhara, Hiroharu Kataoka, Tomohisa Okada, Yasutaka Fushimi and Susumu Miyamoto

OBJECT

Unstable moyamoya disease, reasonably defined as cases exhibiting either rapid disease progression or repeated ischemic stroke, represents a challenge in the treatment of moyamoya disease. Despite its overall efficacy, direct bypass for such unstable disease remains controversial in terms of safety. This study aims to reveal factors associated with unstable disease and to assess its impact on postoperative silent or symptomatic ischemic lesions.

METHODS

This retrospective cohort study included both pediatric and adult patients with moyamoya disease who had undergone 140 consecutive direct bypass procedures at Kyoto University Hospital. “Unstable moyamoya disease” was defined as either the rapid progression of a steno-occlusive lesion or repeat ischemic stroke, either occurring within 6 months of surgery. The extent of progression was determined through a comparison of the findings between 2 different MR angiography sessions performed before surgery. The clinical variables of the stable and unstable disease groups were compared, and the association between unstable disease and postoperative diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI)–detected lesion was assessed through univariate and multivariate analyses with generalized estimating equations.

RESULTS

Of 134 direct bypass procedures performed after patients had undergone at least 2 sessions of MR angiography, 24 (17.9%) were classified as cases of unstable disease. Age younger than 3 years (p = 0.029), underlying disease causing moyamoya syndrome (p = 0.049), and radiographic evidence of infarction (p = 0.030) were identified as factors associated with unstable disease. Postoperative DWI-defined lesions were detected after 13 of 140 procedures (9.3%), although only 4 lesions (2.9%) could be classified as a permanent complication. The incidence of postoperative DWI-detected lesions in the unstable group was notable at 33.3% (8 of 24). Univariate analysis revealed that unstable disease (p < 0.001), underlying disease (p = 0.028), and recent stroke (p = 0.012) were factors associated with DWI-detected lesions. Unstable disease remained statistically significant after adjustment for covariates in both the primary and sensitivity analyses (primary analysis: OR 6.62 [95% CI 1.79–24.5]; sensitivity analysis: OR 5.36 [95% CI 1.47–19.6]).

CONCLUSIONS

Unstable moyamoya disease, more prevalent in younger patients and those with underlying disease, is a possible risk factor for perioperative ischemic complications. Recognition of unstable moyamoya disease may contribute to an improved surgical result through focused perioperative management based on appropriate surgical risk stratification.