Objective and importance: A clinical case of a dissecting aneurysm of the intracranial vertebral artery successfully treated with a combination of stents and coils is presented. The importance of long-term follow-up and the development of suitable materials and devices are emphasized.
Clinical presentation: This 48-year-old man with a history of progressive bilateral loss of vision caused by glaucoma developed sudden headache, nausea, and vomiting. At admission, he presented with psychomotor agitation and neck pain. A neurological examination showed bilateral IInd and VIth cranial nerve palsy and neck stiffness. Computed tomography demonstrated a diffuse subarachnoid hemorrhage. Digital subtraction angiography showed a fusiform dilation of Segment IV of the left vertebral artery, with a double lumen sign.
Technique: A bifemoral intra-arterial approach was used. A FasTracker 18 (Target Therapeutics, Fremont, CA) microcatheter was advanced through the true arterial lumen and was then replaced by a self-expandable metallic wall stent. Because of reduced radiopacity, a balloon-expandable metallic stent was then placed as well. Next, with a FasTracker 10 advanced through the stent mesh, the aneurysm was embolized using Guglielmi detachable coils.
Conclusion: We applied a new technique to treat a dissecting aneurysm of the intracranial portion of the vertebral artery with a combination of stents and coils. Further work is required on the tracking, flexibility, and thrombogenic properties of diverse materials and devices. This evolving technology may play a role in the near future as the alternative of choice in some cases of aneurysm treatment via the endovascular route.