Mechanical Thrombectomy with Stent Retrievers in Acute Basilar Artery Occlusion

Departments of Neuroradiology and Neurology, University of Heidelberg Medical Center, Heidelberg, Germany.
American Journal of Neuroradiology (Impact Factor: 3.59). 11/2013; 35(5). DOI: 10.3174/ajnr.A3796
Source: PubMed


Background and purpose:
Basilar artery occlusion remains one of the most devastating subtypes of ischemic stroke. The prognosis is poor if early recanalization is not achieved. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety and technical feasibility of self-expanding retrievable stents in the endovascular treatment of acute basilar artery occlusion.

Materials and methods:
Twenty-four patients with acute basilar artery occlusion were treated with Solitaire FR or Revive SE devices between December 2009 and May 2012. Additional treatment included intravenous and/or intra-arterial thrombolysis (21/24) and percutaneous transluminal angioplasty/permanent stent placement (7/24). Recanalization was assessed by means of the TICI score. Clinical outcome was determined at discharge (NIHSS), and at 3 months (mRS).

Median NIHSS score on admission was 24; median duration of symptoms was 254 minutes. Successful recanalization (TICI 2b +3) by thrombectomy only was achieved in 18 patients (75%). Intracranial stent deployment after thrombectomy caused by underlying atherosclerotic stenosis was performed in 7 patients. If these patients with intracranial stent placement are included, successful recanalization was achieved in 21 of 24 patients (87.5%). NIHSS improvement ≥10 points was reached in 54% of patients (n = 13/24). Mortality during the first 3 months was 29% (7/24). After 3 months, 8 patients (33%) had a favorable clinical outcome (mRS 0-2).

In our series, application of self-expanding retrievable stents in acute basilar artery occlusion resulted in a high recanalization rate without procedural complications and good clinical outcome in one-third of patients.

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