Flow diversion in ruptured intracranial aneurysms: A meta-analysis

T. P. Madaelil, C. J. Moran, D. T. Cross, A. P. Kansagra

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40 Scopus citations


Background: Flow diversion is now an established technique to treat unruptured intracranial aneurysms not readily amenable to endovascular coil embolization or open microsurgical occlusion. The role of flow-diverting devices in treating ruptured aneurysms is less clear. PURPOSE: To estimate rates of angiographic occlusion and good clinical outcome in patients with ruptured intracranial aneurysms treated with flow-diverting devices. DATA SOURCES: Systematic review of Ovid MEDLINE, PubMed, Cochrane databases, and EMBASE from inception to December 2015 for articles that included ruptured aneurysms treated with flow diversion. STUDY SELECTION: One hundred seventy-two records were screened, of which 20 articles contained sufficient patient and outcome data for inclusion. DATA ANALYSIS: Clinical and radiologic characteristics, procedural details, and outcomes were extracted from these reports. Aggregated occlusion rates and clinical outcomes were analyzed by using the Fisher exact test (statistical significance, α =.05). DATA SYNTHESIS: Complete occlusion of the aneurysm was achieved in 90% of patients, and favorable clinical outcome was attained in 81%. Aneurysm size greater than 7 mm was associated with less favorable clinical outcomes (P =.027). Aneurysm size greater than 2 cm was associated with a greater risk of rerupture after treatment (P <.001). LIMITATIONS: Observational studies and case reports may be affected by reporting bias. CONCLUSIONS: Although not recommended as a first-line treatment, the use of flow diverters to treat ruptured intracranial aneurysms may allow high rates of angiographic occlusion and good clinical outcome in carefully selected patients. Aneurysm size contributes to treatment risk because the rerupture rate following treatment is higher for aneurysms larger than 2 cm.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)590-595
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


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