Development of an in-vitro model based on patient vessel geometry for simulated use testing in neurointerventional surgery

Interv Neuroradiol. 2023 Mar 6:15910199231158444. doi: 10.1177/15910199231158444. Online ahead of print.


Background: Neurointerventionalists use in-vitro vascular models to train for worst-case scenarios and test new devices in a simulated use environment to predict clinical performance. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), any neurovascular navigation device should be able to successfully navigate two 360-degree turns and two 180-degree turns at the distal portion of the anatomical model. Here, we present a device benchmarking vascular model that complies with FDA recommendations.

Methods: Our vascular model was assembled from quantitative characterization of 49 patients who underwent CT angiography either for acute ischemic stroke caused by large vessel occlusion or for aneurysm treatment. Following complete characterization of these data, the vascular segments were 3D reconstructed from CT angiograms of 6 selected patients that presented with challenging anatomy. The curvature and total rotational angle were calculated for each segment and the anatomical parts that complied with FDA recommendations were fused together into a single in-vitro model.

Results: The model was constructed containing two common carotid branches arising from a type two aortic arch and the dimensions of the overall model exceeded the recommendations of the FDA. Two experienced neurointerventionalists tested the model for navigation difficulty using several devices on an in-vitro perfusion system and concluded that the model provided a realistic, challenging scenario.

Conclusions: This model provides a first prototype designed according to FDA recommendations of cumulative angle while also integrating an aggregation of actual patient-specific anatomy. The availability of this clinically relevant benchmark model presents a potential standardized approach for neurovascular device testing.

Keywords: Acute ischemic stroke; anatomy; large vessel occlusion; simulated use testing.