Guglielmi detachable coil embolization of cerebral aneurysms: 11 years' experience

J Neurosurg. 2003 May;98(5):959-66. doi: 10.3171/jns.2003.98.5.0959.


Object: The authors report on their 11 years' experience with embolization of cerebral aneurysms using Guglielmi Detachable Coil (GDC) technology and on the attendant anatomical and clinical outcomes.

Methods: Since December 1990, 818 patients harboring 916 aneurysms were treated with GDC embolization at University of California at Los Angeles Medical Center. For comparative purposes, the patients were divided into two groups: Group A included their initial 5 years' experience with 230 patients harboring 251 aneurysms and Group B included the later 6 years' experience with 588 patients harboring 665 aneurysms. Angiographically demonstrated complete occlusion was achieved in 55% of aneurysms and a neck remnant was displayed in 35.4% of lesions. Incomplete embolization was performed in 3.5% of aneurysms, and in 5% occlusion was attempted unsuccessfully. A comparison between the two groups revealed a higher complete embolization rate in patients in Group B compared with that in Group A patients (56.8 and 50.2%, respectively). The overall morbidity/mortality rate was 9.4%. Angiographic follow ups were obtained in 53.4% of cases of aneurysms, and recanalization was exhibited in 26.1% of aneurysms in Group A and 17.2% of those in Group B. The overall recanalization rate was 20.9%. Note that recanalization was related to the size of the dome and neck of the aneurysm. Overall incidence of delayed aneurysm rupture was 1.6%, a rate that improved in the past 5 years to 0.5%. Ten of 12 delayed ruptures occurred in large or giant aneurysms.

Conclusions: The clinical and postembolization outcomes in patients treated with the GDC system have improved in the past 5 years. Aneurysm recanalization, however, is still a major limitation of current GDC therapy. Follow-up angiography is mandatory after GDC embolization of cerebral aneurysms. Further technical and device improvements are mandatory to overcome current GDC limitations.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / diagnostic imaging
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / therapy*
  • Angioplasty, Balloon / instrumentation
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Embolization, Therapeutic / instrumentation*
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / diagnostic imaging
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care
  • Recurrence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Subarachnoid Hemorrhage / diagnostic imaging
  • Subarachnoid Hemorrhage / therapy*