Percutaneous transluminal angioplasty of the vertebral artery. A therapeutic alternative to operative reconstruction of proximal vertebral artery stenoses

J Neurol. 1986 Nov;233(6):336-9. doi: 10.1007/BF00313919.


Percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA) of the proximal vertebral artery was performed in 13 patients with stenosis of the proximal vertebral arteries. All of these patients had symptoms indicating vertebrobasilar insufficiency. PTA was performed only if an extreme reduction of the total diameter of both vertebral arteries was present. Only 13 patients have fulfilled the strict selection criteria in the last 3 years. All patients were monitored during the procedure by means of continuous-wave Doppler ultrasound and electrophysiological techniques. After PTA their neurological and vascular conditions were serially examined. Of the 13 patients, 8 showed marked improvement of both subjective and objective clinical symptoms. During an observation period of 2-25 months (average: 15 months) reocclusion of the angioplasty was observed in only 2 cases, without any additional neurological sequelae. Electrophysiological and Doppler sonographic monitoring during PTA helped to minimize the risk of angioplasty.

MeSH terms

  • Angioplasty, Balloon*
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / diagnostic imaging
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / therapy*
  • Constriction, Pathologic / diagnostic imaging
  • Constriction, Pathologic / therapy
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Vertebral Artery*