Background: Surgery for intracranial aneurysms that have been treated by endovascular coiling is a new challenge for neurosurgeons and the need for it will undoubtedly continue to increase. The indications for, timing, and technique of surgery in our experience are described.
Methods: We have reviewed our experience with 11 patients who underwent surgery following endovascular coiling with Guglielmi detachable coils (GDCs) of an aneurysm. We analyzed the indications for surgery, surgical techniques used, and patient outcome.
Results: There were nine female and two male patients. The mean age was 49 years (range 13 to 67 years). The intervals between coiling and surgery were 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 7, 10, and 14 days, 6 weeks, 2, 18, and 25 months. The indications for surgery were partial treatment (3), growth of residual neck (2), persistent mass effect of a giant aneurysm (1), mass effect from the coil ball (2), coil migration (2), and coil protrusion with embolic event (1). The coils were removed at the time of surgery from 9 of 11 aneurysms before clipping. In two cases it was possible to place a clip across the neck of the aneurysm without removing the coils, as the coils no longer occupied the neck. There were two permanent deficits directly related to the endovascular procedures. Two other patients who presented with subarachnoid hemorrhage had residual neurological deficits post surgery and one patient with a giant aneurysm had persistent visual loss.
Conclusion: Surgery remains a viable option at any time for treating aneurysms that have been previously treated by GDC placement. The operative approach is determined by the need for coil removal and the duration since coiling.