The Solitaire system has recently been increasingly used for acute stroke treatment in which the endothelial safety immediately after its use has not been evaluated. This study was performed to evaluate the endothelial status when using a Solitaire system in a canine arterial occlusion model. Thromboembolic occlusion of both internal maxillary arteries was achieved in five mongrel dogs. In each animal, the Solitaire system (ev3, Irvine, CA, USA) was used for primary thrombectomy on the right side and for temporary stenting on the left side. Efficacy was assessed by comparing the recanalization rates, and safety was assessed using angiographic and microscopic assessments. Endothelial injuries were evaluated with light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Successful revascularizations were observed following primary thrombectomy in all five animals (100%) and after temporary stenting in two (40%). There was no incidence of vasospasm or vessel perforation in either group. Distal migration of the clot occurred in two animals that underwent primary thrombectomy. Endothelial injury was seen after primary thrombectomy in two animals (40%) and after temporary stenting in one (20%). The lesions presented as defects of the internal elastic lamina on LM and denudation of the wavy endothelial surface on SEM. During mechanical thrombectomy, the Solitaire system can cause endothelial injury both in primary thrombectomy and temporary stenting. Primary thrombectomy is likely to have a higher recanalization rate with increased endothelial injury.
Keywords: animal model; endothelium; stents; stroke; thrombectomy.