Three-dimensional geometrical characterization of cerebral aneurysms

Ann Biomed Eng. 2004 Feb;32(2):264-73. doi: 10.1023/b:abme.0000012746.31343.92.


The risk of rupture of cerebral aneurysms has been correlated with the size of the aneurysm sac. It is conceivable that geometrical shape, not just size may also be related to aneurysm rupture potential. Further, aneurysm shape may also be a factor in deciding on treatment modalities, i.e., to clip or coil. However, our ability to make use of available information on aneurysm shape remains poor. In this study, methods were developed to quantify the seemingly arbitrary three-dimensional geometry of the aneurysm sac, using differential and computational geometry techniques. From computed tomography angiography (CTA) data, the three-dimensional geometry of five unruptured human cerebral aneurysms was reconstructed. Various indices (maximum diameter, neck diameter, height, aspect ratio, bottleneck factor, bulge location, volume, surface area, Gaussian and mean curvatures, isoperimetric ratio, and convexity ratio) were utilized to characterize the geometry of these aneurysm surfaces and four size-matched hypothetical control aneurysms. The physical meanings of various indices and their possible role as prognosticators for rupture risk and presurgical planning were discussed.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms*
  • Cerebral Angiography / methods*
  • Humans
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods*
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / classification*
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / diagnostic imaging*
  • Models, Cardiovascular
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Severity of Illness Index