Intracranial aneurysms: MR angiographic screening in 400 asymptomatic individuals with increased familial risk

Radiology. 1995 Apr;195(1):35-40. doi: 10.1148/radiology.195.1.7892491.


Purpose: To evaluate the accuracy and limitations of magnetic resonance (MR) angiographic screening for incidental intracranial aneurysms (IAs) in healthy individuals with a family history of IA.

Materials and methods: Four hundred asymptomatic individuals in 68 families with a history of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage underwent MR angiography. Six families also had a history of polycystic kidney disease. A multislab, three-dimensional, time-of-flight sequence was used. Conventional angiography was performed to confirm positive MR angiographic findings.

Results: IAs were detected with MR angiography in 37 individuals, 32 of whom underwent conventional angiography. Intraobserver consistency was excellent (kappa = 0.96), and interobserver reproducibility was good to excellent (kappa = 0.59-0.82). Both techniques showed similar results in the evaluation of size, localization, and orientation of aneurysms and visibility of the aneurysm neck.

Conclusion: MR angiography is an accurate and feasible method of noninvasive screening for IAs in individuals at high risk. Conventional angiography is still necessary before operative treatment.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / complications
  • Aneurysm, Ruptured / genetics
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / complications
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / diagnosis*
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / diagnostic imaging
  • Intracranial Aneurysm / genetics
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Observer Variation
  • Risk Factors
  • Subarachnoid Hemorrhage / etiology
  • Subarachnoid Hemorrhage / genetics