Endovascular treatment of blister aneurysms

Neurosurg Focus. 2017 Jun;42(6):E12. doi: 10.3171/2017.3.FOCUS1751.


Blister aneurysms are rare cerebrovascular lesions for which the treatment methods are reviewed here, with a focus on endovascular options. The reported pathogenesis of blister aneurysms varies, and hemodynamic stress, arterial dissection, and arteriosclerotic ulceration have all been described. There is consensus on the excessive fragility of blister aneurysms and their parent vessels, which makes clipping technically difficult. Open surgical treatment is associated with high rates of complications, morbidity, and mortality; endovascular treatment is a promising alternative. Among endovascular treatment options, deconstructive treatment has been associated with higher morbidity compared with reconstructive methods such as direct embolization, stent- or balloon-assisted direct embolization, stent monotherapy, and flow diversion. Flow diversion has been associated with higher technical success rates and similar clinical outcomes compared with non-flow diverting treatment methods. However, delayed aneurysm occlusion and the need for antiplatelet therapy are potential drawbacks to flow diversion that must be considered when choosing among treatment methods for blister aneurysms.

Keywords: ACA = anterior cerebral artery; FDs = flow-diverting devices; ICA = internal carotid artery; MCA = middle cerebral artery; PCA = posterior cerebral artery; PED, PED-Shield = Pipeline embolization device, PED with Shield technology; PICA = posterior inferior cerebellar artery; SAH = subarachnoid hemorrhage; VA = vertebral artery; blister aneurysm; comparison; endovascular; flow diverter; mRS = modified Rankin Scale.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiography, Digital Subtraction
  • Blister / complications
  • Blister / diagnostic imaging
  • Blister / surgery*
  • Endovascular Procedures / instrumentation
  • Endovascular Procedures / methods*
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / complications
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / diagnostic imaging
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / surgery*
  • Stents*
  • Treatment Outcome