Objectives: The Pipeline embolization device (PED) (Chestnut Medical Technologies, Inc., Menlo Park, CA) is a new microcatheter-delivered endovascular construct designed to achieve the curative reconstruction of the parent arteries giving rise to wide-necked and fusiform intracranial aneurysms. We present our initial periprocedural experience with the PED and midterm follow-up results for a series of 53 patients.
Methods: Patients harboring large and giant wide-necked, nonsaccular, and recurrent intracranial aneurysms were selected for treatment. All patients were pretreated with dual antiplatelet medications for at least 72 hours before surgery and continued taking both agents for at least 6 months after treatment. A control digital subtraction angiogram was typically performed at 3, 6, and 12 months.
Results: Fifty-three patients (age range, 11-77 years; average age, 55.2 years; 48 female) with 63 intracranial aneurysms were treated with the PED. Small (n = 33), large (n = 22), and giant (n = 8) wide-necked aneurysms were included. A total of 72 PEDs were used. Treatment was achieved with a single PED in 44 aneurysms, with 2 overlapping PEDs in 17 aneurysms, and with 3 overlapping PEDs in 2 aneurysms. The mean time between the treatment and last follow-up digital subtraction angiogram was 5.9 months (range, 1-22 months). Complete angiographic occlusion was achieved in 56%, 93%, and 95% of aneurysms at 3 (n = 42), 6 (n = 28), and 12 (n = 18) months, respectively. The only aneurysm that remained patent at the time of the 12-month follow-up examination had been treated previously with stent-supported coiling. The presence of a preexisting endoluminal stent may have limited the efficacy of the PED reconstruction in this aneurysm. No aneurysms demonstrated a deterioration of angiographic occlusion during the follow-up period (i.e., no recanalizations). No major complications (stroke or death) were encountered during the study period. Three patients (5%), all with giant aneurysms, experienced transient exacerbations of preexisting cranial neuropathies and headache after the PED treatment. All 3 were treated with corticosteroids, and these symptoms resolved within 1 month.
Conclusion: Endovascular reconstruction with the PED represents a safe, durable, and curative treatment of selected wide-necked, large and giant cerebral aneurysms. The rate of complete occlusion at the time of the 12-month follow-up examination approached 100% in the present study. To date, no angiographic recurrences have been observed during serial angiographic follow-up.