Flow diverter (FD) stents represent a new endovascular technique developed for the treatment of complex intracranial aneurysms (wide neck, fusiform, large, and giant aneurysms) that are challenging for classic endovascular techniques such as coiling, balloon-assisted coiling and stent-assisted coiling. Low porosity, high metal coverage, and high pore density are the main properties of FD stents. These properties induce hemodynamic changes redirecting the blood flow away from the aneurysm and into the parent artery leading to gradual thrombosis of the aneurysm. FD stents also provide scaffolding for subsequent neoendothelial proliferation, and vessel wall remodeling. This is considered as a paradigm shift compared to prior endovascular methods, which predominantly aimed at providing treatment inside the aneurysmal sac. This paper describes in detail the first released FD stent, the Silk flow-diverter stent (Balt Extrusion, Montmorency, France), its mechanism of action and deployment technique. It reviews the pertinent literature regarding safety, efficacy and potential risks and complications associated with the use of this stent.
Keywords: Silk flow diverter; endovascular treatment; flow diversion; intracranial aneurysms.