Objective: To reduce morbidity and mortality after subarachnoid hemorrhage, it is imperative to evaluate the results of the surgical treatment of cerebral aneurysms. We investigated the usefulness of spiral computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance angiography as postoperative control examinations after cerebral aneurysms were clipped with titanium clips.
Methods: Eleven patients with 13 treated aneurysms were studied prospectively with postoperative digital subtraction angiography, spiral CT, and magnetic resonance angiography. The occlusion of the dome of the aneurysm, the presence of a remnant of the neck, the patency of the parent vessels and other major vessels, and the presence of vasospasm were investigated.
Results: The different parameters could all be well evaluated by postoperative spiral CT. The artifacts caused by the titanium clips, although relatively small compared with artifacts from other clips, precluded evaluating the dome and the neck of the aneurysm with magnetic resonance angiography.
Conclusion: In our opinion, spiral CT promises to become a valuable aid in in the postoperative evaluation of clipped aneurysms, and we recommend its routine performance. Postoperative digital subtraction angiography remains the gold standard and has to be performed when spiral CT reveals abnormalities, when the neck of the aneurysm cannot be evaluated because the clip overlays it, or when, intraoperatively, imperfect clipping is suspected and intraoperative angiography cannot be performed.