Incidental vascular lesions are being discovered at an increasing frequency due to widespread noninvasive brain imaging studies. One of these lesions has recently been termed a “pure arterial malformation” (PAM), which is defined as dilated, overlapping, and tortuous arteries forming a mass of arterial loops with a coil-like appearance in the absence of arteriovenous shunting. The pathogenesis of these lesions is not known, but a congenital etiology is suspected. The authors report the case of a 17-year-old female who was found to have a PAM of the posterior inferior cerebellar artery with adipose tissue interspersed within the arterial loops. The authors believe that this abnormal intracranial association between blood vessel and adipose tissue lends further support to the theory that PAMs are the result of a congenital malformation and are therefore safe to manage conservatively given their presumed benign natural history. Far from offering conclusive evidence, this unique case report adds to the growing body of PAM literature and strengthens an increasingly supported congenital theory of genesis.
Thomas J. Sorenson, Waleed Brinjikji, Kelly D. Flemming and Giuseppe Lanzino
Giulio Cecchini, Giovanni Vitale, Thomas J. Sorenson and Francesco Di Biase
Cavernous malformations in the midbrain can be accessed via several safe entry zones. The accepted rule of thumb is to enter at the point where the lesion is visible at the surface of the brainstem to pass through as little normal brain tissue as possible. However, in some cases, in order to avoid critical neural structures, this rule may not apply. A different safe entry zone can be chosen. Our video presents a case of a ruptured cavernous malformation in the midbrain reaching its anterior surface which was successfully resected via a posterolateral route using the supracerebellar infratentorial approach.
The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/j7VTqRO7qd4.
Thomas J. Sorenson, Lucio De Maria, Leonardo Rangel-Castilla and Giuseppe Lanzino
Craniocervical junction dural arteriovenous fistulas (dAVFs) are rare vascular lesions with a potentially dangerous natural history due to the onset of neurological deficit secondary to intracranial hemorrhage or myelopathy due to venous congestion. Despite advances in endovascular techniques, many dAVFs located in this area continue to require surgical treatment as embolization is often not feasible or safe. In this video, the authors illustrate a patient with a symptomatic craniocervical junction dAVF who had undergone attempted Onyx embolization at another institution. Because of persistent filling of the fistula and worsening myelopathy after the previous attempt, the patient was referred to the authors’ clinic for definitive surgical treatment. The video illustrates the typical location of the early draining vein in most craniocervical junction dAVFs immediately below the emergence of the vertebral artery from the dura. The patient underwent successful definitive clip ligation of the fistula, which was exposed through a lateral suboccipital craniotomy.
The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/Bvg6VKLgwO0.
Giovanni Vercelli, Thomas J. Sorenson, Enrico Giordan, Giuseppe Lanzino and Leonardo Rangel-Castilla
Cerebral protection device utilization during carotid artery stenting (CAS) has been demonstrated to decrease the risk of perioperative stroke. The ProximAl Protection with the MO.MA Device During CaRotid Stenting (ARMOUR) Trial had the lowest event rates of any independently adjudicated study. In this video of two cases of severe carotid artery stenosis, the authors present the nuances of the CAS procedure utilizing a dual-balloon guide catheter device (MO.MA). This device has the benefit of being in place before the lesion is crossed with any device, being able to arrest flow while the atherosclerotic lesion is crossed, and aiding in protection from distal emboli and stroke.
The video can be found here: https://youtu.be/0o8DlC1n6_M.
Giovanni Vercelli, Thomas J. Sorenson, Ahmad Z. Aljobeh, Roanna Vine and Giuseppe Lanzino
Cavernous internal carotid artery (ICA) aneurysms are frequently diagnosed incidentally and the benign natural history of these lesions is well known, but there is limited information assessing the risk of growth in untreated patients. The authors sought to assess and analyze risk factors in patients with cavernous ICA aneurysms and compare them to those of patients with intracranial berry aneurysms in other locations.
Data from consecutive patients who were diagnosed with a cavernous ICA aneurysm were retrospectively reviewed. The authors evaluated patients for the incidence of cavernous ICA aneurysm growth and rupture. In addition, the authors analyzed risk factors for cavernous ICA aneurysm growth and compared them to risk factors in a population of patients diagnosed with intracranial berry aneurysms in locations other than the cavernous ICA during the same period.
In 194 patients with 208 cavernous ICA aneurysms, the authors found a high risk of aneurysm growth (19.2% per patient-year) in patients with large/giant aneurysms. Size was significantly associated with higher risk of growth. Compared to patients with intracranial berry aneurysms in other locations, patients with cavernous ICA aneurysms were significantly more likely to be female and have a lower incidence of hypertension.
Aneurysms of the cavernous ICA are benign lesions with a negligible risk of rupture but a definite risk of growth. Aneurysm size was found to be associated with aneurysm growth, which can be associated with new onset of symptoms. Serial follow-up imaging of a cavernous ICA aneurysm might be indicated to monitor for asymptomatic growth, especially in patients with larger lesions.
Tiziano Tallarita, Thomas J. Sorenson, Lorenzo Rinaldo, Gustavo S. Oderich, Thomas C. Bower, Fredric B. Meyer and Giuseppe Lanzino
Concomitant unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) are present in patients with carotid artery stenosis not infrequently and result in unique management challenges. Thus, we investigated the risk of rupture of an aneurysm after revascularization of a carotid artery in a contemporary consecutive series of patients seen at our institution.
Data from patients who underwent a carotid revascularization in the presence of at least one concomitant UIA at our institution from 1991 to 2018 were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were evaluated for the incidence of aneurysm rupture within 30 days (early period) and after 30 days (late period) of carotid revascularization, as well as for the incidence of periprocedural complications from the treatment of carotid stenosis and/or UIA.
Our study included 53 patients with 63 concomitant UIAs. There was no rupture within 30 days of carotid revascularization. The overall risk of rupture was 0.87% per patient-year. Treatment (coiling or clipping) of a concomitant UIA, if pursued, could be performed successfully after carotid revascularization.
Carotid artery revascularization in the setting of a concomitant UIA can be performed safely without an increased 30-day or late-term risk of rupture. If indicated, treatment of the UIA can take place after the patient recovers from the carotid procedure.