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Surg Neurol. 2006 Sep;66(3):277-84; discussion 284.

Endovascular embolization vs surgical clipping in treatment of cerebral aneurysms: morbidity and mortality with short-term outcome.

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Department of Neurosurgery, Zagazig University Hospital, Egypt.



Endovascular embolization of cerebral aneurysms has evolved rapidly worldwide within the last years, and has gained more popularity at the expense of surgical clipping; however, both regimens have inherent risks. This study was undertaken to asses the cerebral complications associated with both modalities of cerebral aneurysm treatment.


We retrospectively reviewed the charts, operative and embolization reports, and imaging of patients who underwent surgical clipping or embolization for cerebral aneurysms at our institution between October 2001 and October 2004. Patients were divided into 2 groups: group A, patients who had confirmed subarachnoid hemorrhage; group B, patients with unruptured cerebral aneurysms. Patients belonging to group A were evaluated according to the Hunt and Hess scale with their computed tomography scan evaluated according to Fisher scale. Short-term outcome was measured with Glasgow Outcome Scale for both groups.


One hundred thirty-three patients with 168 aneurysms were treated; 95 (71.4%) were women and 38 (28.6%) men; mean age was 60.28 years. Hypertension (29.6%) was the most commonly encountered risk factor; average size of aneurysms treated was 7.21 mm; 53 patients belonged to group A. Seven patients were Hunt and Hess grade I, 23 grade II, 11 grade III, 7 grade IV, and 5 grade V. Eighty patients belonged to group B; for both groups, the periprocedural technical complication rate associated with coiling was 8.4% vs 19.35% with clipping. Follow-up angiographic results were better with clipping, as total aneurysm occlusion was 81.4% vs 57.5% with coiling. In group A, the incidence of angiographic vasospasm was 17.4% vs 45.4% with coiling vs clipping, whereas the incidence of shunt-dependant hydrocephalus was comparable with embolization and clipping. In group A, excellent outcome was achieved in 62% vs 44% (endovascular vs surgical) of subgroups, whereas in group B, it was 93% vs 81%, respectively.


With rapidly evolving technology of endovascular embolization, accumulated experience, and good selection of patients with optimum angioanatomical criteria and endovascular accessibility, our results of morbidity and mortality associated with both modalities of cerebral aneurysm treatment with short-term outcome show that endovascular embolization of cerebral aneurysms is a safe alternative to surgical clipping in the treatment of both ruptured and unruptured cerebral aneurysms; however, long-term outcome needs to be evaluated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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