A cylindrical pipeline used for treating large brain aneurysms is just as effective on smaller and sometimes harder to reach ones, according to the results of a clinical trial announced last week. The study’s findings were presented at the International Stroke Conference in Houston by Ricardo A. Hanel, neurovascular surgeon with Baptist Health, who is director of the Baptist Neurological Institute. Eric Sauvageau, neurovascular surgeon and director of the Baptist Stroke & Cerebrovascular Center, was a co-author and co-investigator on the study.
A cerebral aneurysm is a weak or thin spot on a blood vessel in the brain that balloons out and fills with blood. This cylindrical Pipeline, a braided mesh known as a flow diverter, is inserted through a microcatheter into an artery in the groin. The device is then threaded through the body to the brain to slow the flow of blood into the aneurysm and allow the diseased vessel to heal.
The Pipeline is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for adults with large aneurysms (which are greater than 12 millimeters). The results of the clinical trial could open up the procedure for use on patients with small- and medium-sized, wide-necked, unruptured aneurysms, which make up the majority of the cases.
Twenty-two sites in the United States and one in Canada participated in the study of 141 patients, including 21 from Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville. The study found that a high rate of aneurysms were completely healed at the one-year follow-up, with no cases of recurrence. There were also no incidents of aneurysms rupturing one year after the procedure. These results will be submitted to the FDA for review.
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