Background: Chronic subdural hematoma (SDH) is a particularly challenging pathology due to high recurrence rates (2%-37%) and complex medical comorbidities that tend to afflict the patient population. Recently, there have been several case series published describing the use of middle meningeal artery (MMA) embolization as an alternative to surgery for treatment of new or recurrent chronic SDH.
Objective: To describe our first 60 cases of MMA embolization for chronic SDH.
Methods: MMA embolization was performed using angiography, selective microcatheterization of the MMA, and infusion of polyvinyl alcohol particles. Outcomes were assessed clinically and with interval imaging studies at 1 d, 2 wk, and 6 wk postprocedure, and additional intervals as indicated.
Results: MMA embolization was performed successfully on 60 total SDHs in 49 patients. This includes upfront treatment for new (not previously treated) SDH in 42, for recurrence in 8, and prophylaxis (soon after surgical evacuation) in 10. There were 3 mortalities (unrelated to the procedure), and no procedural complications. Of the 50 nonprophylactic cases, there were 4 (8.9%) cases of recurrence requiring surgical evacuation, and 31 (68.9%) that had resolution or reduction in size >50% of SDH at longest follow-up. Overall, 41 (91.1%) were stable or decreased in size and able to avoid surgery.
Conclusion: MMA embolization may represent a minimally-invasive alternative to surgery for new or recurrent chronic SDH, or as prophylaxis to reduce the risk of recurrence after surgery. Given our encouraging results with a 91% long-term success rate, a large scale clinical trial is warranted.
Keywords: Embolization; Middle meningeal artery; Minimally invasive; Subdural hematoma.
Copyright © 2018 by the Congress of Neurological Surgeons.