Background: Current "best" medical therapy with anti-platelet and/or anti-thrombotic agents for symptomatic atherosclerotic intracranial (IC) disease is associated with high recurrence. IC catheter-based therapy (CBT) using balloon angioplasty with or without stent placement is an option for patients who have failed medical therapy. We sought to examine the outcomes of CBT for patients with symptomatic IC arterial disease managed by experienced interventional cardiologists.
Methods: We retrospectively studied 89 consecutive symptomatic patients with 99 significant (≥70% diameter) IC arterial stenoses who underwent CBT. CBT was performed by experienced interventional cardiologists with the consultative support of a neurovascular team. The primary endpoint was stroke and vascular death.
Results: Procedure success was achieved in 96/99 (97%) lesions and percent diameter stenosis was reduced from 91% ± 7.5% preprocedure to 19% ± 15% postprocedure (P < 0.001). The rate of in-hospital periprocedural stroke and all death was 3%. The primary endpoint of stroke and vascular death rate at 1 year was 5.7% (5/88) and at 2 years was 13.5% (11/81). The 2-year all-cause mortality was 11.3% (10/88).
Conclusions: For patients with symptomatic IC arterial stenosis who have failed medical therapy or are considered very high risk for stroke, CBT performed by experienced interventional cardiologists is safe and offers both high procedural success rates and excellent clinical outcomes at 1 year. CBT is an attractive option for this high-risk patient population considering the expected 12-15% rate of recurrent stroke at 1 year.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.