The aspect ratio (dome/neck) of ruptured and unruptured aneurysms

Bryce Weir M.D. 1 , Christina Amidei M.S.N. 1 , Gail Kongable M.S.N. 1 , J. Max Findlay M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.S.(C) 1 , Neal F. Kassell M.D. 1 , John Kelly M.D. 1 , Lanting Dai M.S. 1 and Theodore G. Karrison Ph.D. 1
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  • 1 Section of Neurosurgery and Department of Health Studies, University of Chicago, Illinois; Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Virginia Health Sciences Center, Charlottesville, Virginia; and Division of Neurosurgery, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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Object. In this retrospective study the authors examined the aspect ratio (AR; the maximum dimension of the dome/width of the neck of an aneurysm) and compared the distribution of this ratio in a group of ruptured and unruptured aneurysms. A similar comparison was performed in relation to the maximum dimension of the aneurysm alone. The authors sought to evaluate the utility of these measures for differentiating ruptured and unruptured aneurysms.

Methods. Measurements were made of 774 aneurysms in 532 patients at three medical centers. One hundred twenty-seven patients harbored only unruptured lesions, 290 only ruptured lesions, and 115 both ruptured and unruptured lesions. Cases were included if angiograms were available for measurement and the status of the individual patient's aneurysm(s) was known.

The odds of a lesion falling in the ruptured aneurysm group increased with both the lesion's maximum size and the AR. The odds ratio for rupture rose progressively only for the AR. The distribution curves showed that ruptured aneurysms were larger and had greater ARs. The mean size of unruptured aneurysms was 7 mm and that of ruptured ones was 8 mm; the corresponding mean ARs were 1.8 and 3.4, respectively. The odds of rupture were 20-fold greater when the AR was larger than 3.47 compared with an AR less than or equal to 1.38. Only 7% of ruptured aneurysms had an AR less than 1.38 compared with 45% of unruptured lesions.

Conclusions. The AR is probably a useful index to calculate. A high AR might reasonably influence the decision to treat actively an unruptured aneurysm independent of its maximum size. Prospective studies are warranted.

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Contributor Notes

Address reprint requests to: Bryce Weir, M.D., 230 Westridge Road, Edmonton, Alberta, T5T 1C1, Canada. email: bkaweir@telus.net.
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