Neurology India
menu-bar5 Open access journal indexed with Index Medicus
  Users online: 10731  
 Home | Login 
About Editorial board Articlesmenu-bullet NSI Publicationsmenu-bullet Search Instructions Online Submission Subscribe Videos Etcetera Contact
  Navigate Here 
 Resource Links
  »  Similar in PUBMED
 »  Search Pubmed for
 »  Search in Google Scholar for
 »Related articles
  »  Article in PDF (3,093 KB)
  »  Citation Manager
  »  Access Statistics
  »  Reader Comments
  »  Email Alert *
  »  Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

  In this Article
 »  Abstract
 »  Materials and Me...
 »  Results and Foll...
 » Discussion
 » Conclusion
 »  References
 »  Article Figures
 »  Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded106    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 6    

Recommend this journal


Table of Contents    
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 68  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 316-324

Posterior Cerebral Artery Aneurysms: Parent Vessel Occlusion Being a Viable Option in the Era of Flowdivertors

1 Department of Radiodiagnosis, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Department of Neuroradiology, PGI, Chandigarh, India
3 Department of Neurosurgery, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
4 Department of Neuroradiology, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India

Date of Web Publication15-May-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vivek Singh
Department of Radiodiagnosis, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0028-3886.280635

Rights and Permissions

 » Abstract 

Background and Purpose: The purpose of this study is to evaluate posterior cerebral artery (PCA) aneurysms along with the efficacy, safety, procedural, and clinical outcome of the endovascular management of these aneurysms. We studied different techniques of endovascular treatment such as selective aneurysmal coiling, parent artery occlusion, and stent-assisted coiling in PCA aneurysms.
Methods: From 2010 to 2017, 11 patients (8 females, 3 males) harboring a PCA aneurysm were treated via an endovascular approach. Seven of eleven aneurysms were saccular in nature; four were fusiform shaped. All aneurysms were treated using detachable coils either by selective obliteration of the aneurysm sac or by parent artery occlusion. In one patient, stent-assisted coiling of PCA aneurysm was done, and in one patient, flowdivertor along with few coils used to treat the aneurysm.
Results: Five of the eleven aneurysms were successfully treated with preservation of the parent artery, and the other six were treated with aneurysm coiling along with parent vessel occlusion. Of the six where parent vessel occlusion was done, one developed transient hemiparesis which recovered on follow-up and none developed significant disabling vision abnormality. No mortality was noted.
Conclusion: Aneurysms of the PCA are rare compared with other locations in the intracranial circulation. These aneurysms can effectively be treated by permanent occlusion of the parent artery even in this era of flowdivertors - however, in these cases, thorough knowledge of PCA segmental anatomy is crucial in order to select the site of occlusion and to avoid major neurological deficits.

Keywords: Flowdivertors, parent vessel occlusion, posterior cerebral artery aneurysms
Key Messages: Parent vessel occlusion in distal posterior cerebral artery aneurysm is still a viable option.

How to cite this article:
Singh V, Phadke RV, Agarwal V, Behari S, Neyaz Z, Chauhan G. Posterior Cerebral Artery Aneurysms: Parent Vessel Occlusion Being a Viable Option in the Era of Flowdivertors. Neurol India 2020;68:316-24

How to cite this URL:
Singh V, Phadke RV, Agarwal V, Behari S, Neyaz Z, Chauhan G. Posterior Cerebral Artery Aneurysms: Parent Vessel Occlusion Being a Viable Option in the Era of Flowdivertors. Neurol India [serial online] 2020 [cited 2022 Nov 30];68:316-24. Available from: https://www.neurologyindia.com/text.asp?2020/68/2/316/280635

Posterior cerebral artery (PCA) aneurysms are not very common and account for ~1% of all intracranial aneurysms.[1],[2],[3],[4] They most commonly involve the P1 or P2 segment of PCA.[4] As compared with anterior circulation aneurysms, PCA aneurysms usually affect younger patients with a tendency to become giant aneurysms. Since the PCA is anatomically located in close proximity to the upper brain stem, cranial nerves, and gives origin to many crucial thalamo-perforating arteries, any neurosurgical approach is risky as compared with endovascular treatment.[4],[5]

Embryologically, the PCA is a branch of the internal carotid artery (ICA); the connection with the basilar artery (pars basilaris) develops later. As it arises from the basilar artery, the PCA can be divided into four segments. The P1 (precommunicating segment) extends from its origin from the basilar artery to the junction with the posterior communicating artery (PCOM). The P2 (ambient segment) is located around the midbrain extending toward the quadrigeminal plate. The P3 (quadrigeminal segment) is located on the surface of the quadrigeminal plate. The P4 segment consists of the terminal cortical branches of the PCA, after the takeoff of the parieto-occipital and calcarine arteries.[4],[6],[7]

Three types of branches arise from PCA, viz., 1) cortical branches to cerebrum such as posterior temporal artery and calcarine artery, 2) perforators to brainstem such as posterior thalamoperforators, and c) choroidal arteries such as medial and lateral posterior choroidal arteries.[8] A precise knowledge of the segmental anatomy of the PCA and its branches is essential, before a treatment is planned more so when parent vessel occlusion is done.

We retrospectively reviewed our data between 2010 and 2017 of all PCA aneurysms that were managed endovascularly at our institute to evaluate the safety and efficacy of this technique along with anatomical details pertaining to the choice of treatment.

 » Materials and Methods Top


Our study included 11 patients with PCA aneurysms (we did not include basilar top aneurysms which were more toward the P1 segment of the PCA) from 2010 to 2017, between 8 and 60 years of age of which 5 patients had subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) and the other 6 patients had different degrees of headache and features due to mass effect. Three of them also had focal small thalamic infarct which led to the presentation probably embolic from partially thrombosed aneurysm. Most of them were located at the P2–P3 segments and one involved the P1–P2 junction and one involved PCOM–P2 junction. Of the five ruptured aneurysms, three were saccular in shape (of which one was giant aneurysm) and two were fusosaccular and of unruptured six aneurysms, two were partially thrombosed giant (diameter >25 mm), two were saccular in shape, and remaining two were fusosaccular large aneurysms (diameter 10-25 mm). Thus, in total we had three giant aneurysms (diameter >25 mm), three large (diameter between 10 and 25 mm), and five aneurysms were less than 10 mm in diameter.


All the patients underwent endovascular management of aneurysms under general anesthesia. Systemic anticoagulation was achieved using intravenous heparin infusion and monitoring of coagulation adequacy was done using activated clotting time. Through femoral artery route adequate size guiding catheter, mostly 6F either Envoy (Codman) or Chaperon (Microvention) was placed inside the vertebral artery. A micro-catheter, mostly Echelon 10 (EV3) with micro-guide wire (Traxcess, Microvention) or Expedion 10 (EV3), was then used to cannulate the aneurysmal sac. Detachable coils (GDC coils, Boston scientific or Axium, EV3 or Microplex, Microvention) were then used to pack the aneurysm. If the plan included the parent artery occlusion, then the dense packing of the sac was avoided and the parent vessel was packed with coils until no further filling of the aneurysm as well as feeding artery was seen on angiography.

To assess the adequate collateral flow, we did the balloon occlusion test in one patient before parent vessel occlusion. Even though it did not reveal any obvious collateral supply from ipsilateral middle cerebral artery, we went ahead with the coiling of aneurysm along with parent vessel occlusion. No major morbidity was seen in that patient on follow-up. In two cases of wide-neck unruptured saccular aneurysm, stent-assisted coiling of the aneurysmal sac was done in one case (LVIS Jr. of Microvention - 2.5-mm diameter) and in the other case flowdivertor FRED Jr (Microvention) was used.

 » Results and Follow-Up Top

We did regular follow-up of these patients in our outpatient department at 6 weeks, at 6 months, and after 1 year of procedure. Modified Rankin scale was used to grade the patients on discharge and follow-up. There was no disabling visual complaint in any of the patient where parent artery occlusion was done, but on detailed visual field evaluation, two had partial cortical blindness. One patient developed hemiparesis which improved after 6 weeks. In three patients, only selective aneurysm coiling was done and none had any major morbidity on discharge or follow-up. Angiographic follow-up (with magnetic resonance angiography [MRA]) did show some neck residue but were stable, so no further treatment is done and they are kept on yearly time of flight (TOF) MRA follow-up. One patient of wide neck aneurysm, where stent-assisted coiling was done, did not develop any neurological deficits and angiographic follow-up after 6 months showed complete occlusion of the aneurysm with patent vessel. The Flowdivertor patient also had no complaints on follow-up; her complaints of vomiting, vertigo were relieved with time; repeat Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) done after 6 months showed complete occlusion of the aneurysm along with patent PCOM and P2 segment where FRED Jr was placed. Details of each case are tabulated in [Table 1] including their outcome using modified Rankin score.
Table 1: Details of patient presentation, size and location of aneurysm, treatment done along with outcome

Click here to view

One of the patients had a repeat SAH 7 years after the initial treatment in which parent vessel occlusion along with aneurysm coiling was done. However, diagnostic imagery revealed a fresh aneurysm in the posterior circulation possibly dissecting one, which got thrombosed on its own when patient was taken for therapeutic procedure.

Illustrative cases

Case 1

A 53-year-old woman presented with severe headache and vomiting. Computed tomography (CT) scan showed Fischer grade III SAH. DSA showed a giant aneurysm located at P1–P2 segmental junction [Figure 1]a, [Figure 1]b, [Figure 1]c shows aneurysm filling from patent PCOM in ICA injection, and in [Figure 1]d, same aneurysm filling from vertebral angiogram]. The aneurysm was selectively coiled using detachable GDC coils [Figure 1]e and [Figure 1]f and finally the parent vessel was also occluded [Figure 1]e, arrow showing coils in parent vessel occluding the artery]. The patient developed hydrocephalus for which ventriculo-peritoneal shunting was done. The patient eventually recovered and was discharged at mRS scale 2. At the 6 years follow-up, the patient was totally asymptomatic with no neurological deficit.
Figure 1: (a) Left internal carotid artery injection shows a giant posterior circulation aneurysm which on vertebral artery injection (b) appeared to be arising from left P1–P2 region and showed delayed filling and persistence of the contrast (c), distal P2 and cortical branches of left side are not seen (d), so loose packing of the aneurysm along with parent vessel occlusion done (e). Arrow in (e) pointing toward coils in parent vessel and vertebral artery injection oblique view (f) showing filling of residual proximal P1 segment

Click here to view

Case 2

A 50-year-old female patient suffered sudden onset of severe headache with vomiting and transient loss of consciousness for half an hour. CT head showed SAH in left ambient cistern. DSA showed large irregular fuso-saccular aneurysm possibly dissecting at P2 segment of left PCA [Figure 2]a. We did a balloon occlusion test [Figure 2]b, [Figure 2]c, [Figure 2]d with arrow in [Figure 2]c and [Figure 2]d pointing toward the compliant balloon hyperform 4 mm × 7 mm; ev3]; there were no significant vascular collaterals [Figure 2]e and [Figure 2]f shows no collaterals in PCA territory once it is occluded by the balloons and angiogram taken from ipsilateral ICA], but as no other viable option was there, we did coiling of the aneurysm along with parent vessel occlusion [Figure 3]a, [Figure 3]b, [Figure 3]c, [Figure 3]d; with arrow in [Figure 3]c pointing toward coils in parent vessel; [Figure 3]e, [Figure 3]f, [Figure 3]g shows no filling of the aneurysm and also no collaterals to distal PCA territory]. Post-procedure magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed left lateral thalamic and left PCA territory infarct possibly because of occlusion of lateral posterior choroidal artery, which arise from that segment. The patient developed mild hemiparesis and was discharged on MRS 4. On follow-up after 6 months, there was significant improvement in both upper and lower limb power and her MRS was 2 at that time.
Figure 2: (a) Left vertebral artery injection showed a fusiform left P2–P3 junction aneurysm with a hyperform balloon 4 × 7 mm (Ev3) placed just before the aneurysm in the P2 segment (b and in oblique projection in c). Arrow in (c and d) showing the balloon in PCA, which was inflated to occlude the artery. Left internal carotid artery injection was done with balloon occlusion of left P2 segment (e) showed no obvious collaterals to left PCA territory even on delayed runs (f)

Click here to view
Figure 3: (a) Vertebral artery injection showing the P2–P3 junction aneurysm balloon occlusion test was done (b showing balloon in P2 segment), following which aneurysm coiling along with parent vessel occlusion was done (c and d with c; arrow pointing toward coils in parent vessel). (e and f) showing postcoiling vertebral artery injection showing no filling of the aneurysm and no collateral filling of the distal posterior cerebral artery (PCA) territory. Left internal carotid artery injection (g) even on delayed runs showed no collaterals to PCA territory

Click here to view

Case 3

A 55-year-female patient with headache and one episode of unconsciousness was evaluated with MRI head and was found to have unruptured PCA P2/3 segment wide neck aneurysm. DSA was done to assess the anatomy [Figure 4]a and [Figure 4]b. Discussion regarding the treatment was done and finally endovascular treatment was advised. As the aneurysm was unruptured wide neck, we planned for stent-assisted coiling and patient was started on aspirin 150 mg and clopidogrel 75 mg daily a week before the procedure. Stent used was Lvis jr 2.5 × 18 mm; Microvention, and coiling of the aneurysm done [Figure 4]c, [Figure 4]d, [Figure 4]e, [Figure 4]f: arrow in [Figure 4]c points toward the microcatheter placed to deploy stent and [Figure 4]f shows final coil mass with stent pointed by arrow in the artery] and patient was discharged on MRS of 1.
Figure 4: (a) Vertebral artery injection showed a wide neck fuso-saccular type aneurysm arising from left P2–P3 segment (b). Aneurysm was crossed with a microcatheter (c; arrows pointing toward microcatheter markers) to place Lvis jr (stent 2.5 × 18 mm). Stent assisted coiling of the aneurysm was done with no filling of the aneureysm and distal posterior cerebral artery is filling normally (d and e). (f) showing coil mass along with stent in parent artery depicted by arrow

Click here to view

Follow-up angiogram after 1 year showed no filling of the aneurysm with patent distal PCA.

Case 4

A 60-year-old female patient presented with headache, vomiting, vertigo, for which she was evaluated and found to have a partially thrombosed giant aneurysm in PCOM–P2 junction along with a small focal right thalamic infarct probably embolic [Figure 5]a and [Figure 5]b showing hyperdense lesion in interpeduncular cistern on noncontrast CT and similar lesion appear variegated on T2W and T1W MRI [Figure 5]c and [Figure 5]d, respectively]. On CTA [Figure 5]e and DSA [Figure 5]f and [Figure 5]g showed partially thrombosed aneurysm], P1 was absent (fetal PCOM); we planned this case with smaller size flowdivertor FRED Jr (Microvention), but it was challenging to place it so that it would not prolapse inside the aneurysm and come into the ICA. We placed few coils inside the aneurysm and then we placed the flowdivertor across it [Figure 5]h. On follow-up, DSA done after 6 months [Figure 5]i showed that there was complete occlusion of the aneurysm and MRI done at that time showed significant reduction in mass effect.
Figure 5: (a) NCCT head showing hyperdensity in pre-pontine interpeduncular cistern (a and b), on T2W MRI (c) and T1W (d); it appear variegated appearance suggestive of partially thrombosed aneurysm. CT angiography (e) showing large aneurysm from posterior communicating artery (PCOM) and P2 junction. DSA 3D runs (f and g) showing a large aneurysm filling from PCOM with no communication from vertebral injection (fetal PCOM). Coiling of aneurysm with flowdivertor placed in the PCOM and posterior cerebral artery (PCA) (h). Postcoiling (i) no filling of aneurysm with patent PCOM and distal PCA

Click here to view

Case 5

An 8-year old female child had headache with loss of consciousness. She was evaluated and found to have SAH along with intraventricular hemorrhage; on angiogram, there was a large saccular aneurysm arising from right P3 segment with distal filling of the PCA branches [Figure 6]a, [Figure 6]b, [Figure 6]c, [Figure 6]d. Trapping of the aneurysm was done with coiling [Figure 6]e, [Figure 6]f, [Figure 6]g with arrows in [Figure 6]e and [Figure 6]f pointing toward the coil mass in distal and proximal vessels used for trapping] and postembolization, distal PCA branches were seen filling from the MCA collaterals [Figure 6]h and [Figure 6]i with arrow in [Figure 6]i pointing toward delayed MCA collaterals]. Steroids and low molecular weight heparin was given to avoid immediate thrombosis and mass effect due to aneurysm thrombosis. Follow-up MRI done after 6 months showed no parenchymal changes in PCA territory with reduction in size of thrombosed aneurysm [Figure 7]a, [Figure 7]b, [Figure 7]c, [Figure 7]d, [Figure 7]e, [Figure 7]f, [Figure 7]g, [Figure 7]h and no neurological deficit.
Figure 6: (a) Left vertebral angiogram showing large aneurysm arising from right P2–P3 with no filling of distal posterior cerebral artery (PCA) but microcatheter injection (b and c) opacified distal branches. Distal branch cannulated with microcatheter (d) and arrow pointing toward it. Coiling of distal branch done (e and arrow points toward coil in distal PCA) and then feeding PCA which was coiled (f). Postcoiling angiogram showed trapping of aneurysm (f and g). Left ICA angiogram (h and i) postcoiling revealed collaterals from MCA to PCA territory (i) arrow pointing toward collaterals)

Click here to view
Figure 7: (a) Postcoiling follow-up MRI done after 6 months showed T2W hypointensity in right ambient cistern region (a and b) and a focal chronic lacune in right thalamus (c). Susceptibility weighted sequence showed hypointensity in the same right ambient cistern (d and e) suggesting aneurysm has shrunken in size. TOF MRA (f-h) showed no filling of the aneurysm and distal parietoccipital branch (g arrow pointing toward trapped aneurysm segment); however, distal calcarine branch is well opacified

Click here to view

Case 6

A 12-year-old male child with long-standing headache developed suddenly right hemiparesis was evaluated with NCCT head and MRI brain, which revealed acute infarct in left anterior thalamic region [Figure 8]a DWI and b T2W MRI] with a partially thrombosed large aneurysm in left perimesencephalic cistern [Figure 8]c T2W and d TOF MRA]. DSA done confirmed that the aneurysm was arising from the left P2–P3 segment and distal PCA branches were not filling even on delayed angiograms [Figure 9]a. Selective cannulation of the aneurysm with the microcatheter done and partial coiling of the aneurysm along with occlusion of the parent vessel was done [Figure 9]b. Postcoiling collaterals were seen from the left ICA; MCA–PCA Collaterals [Figure 9]c. Follow-up MRI done after 3 days showed no cortical infarct in PCA territory [Figure 8]e, [Figure 8]f, [Figure 8]g, [Figure 8]h.
Figure 8: (a) Diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) shows a focal small hyperintensity in left anterior thalamic region which on T2W: (b) also appears hyperintense suggestive of acute infarct in left thalamic region. There is T2W hypointense lesion in left perimesencephalic cistern (c) which on TOF MRA confirmed to be aneurysm (d). MRI done after embolization of the aneurysm showed no new infarct in PCA territory in DWI (e and f) and T2W (g and h); old infarct in thalamic region is seen as before (e and g)

Click here to view
Figure 9: (a) Vertebral angiogram showed a fuso-saccular aneurysm arising from left P2–P3 segment with no opacification of distal posterior cerebral artery (PCA) branches, coiling of the aneurysm along with the parent vessel done (b), and ipsilateral ICA angiogram postcoiling revealed collaterals to the PCA territory depicted by arrow in (c)

Click here to view

 » Discussion Top

Aneurysms arising in PCA are rare and most of them have saccular morphology.[1] Dissecting aneurysms are common in posterior circulation and almost 80%–90% of dissecting intracranial aneurysm occurs in posterior circulation with more than three-fourth being in vertebral artery V4 segment. Dissecting aneurysms on angiography present with typical findings of either a fusiform aneurysm, pearl and string sign, delayed filling of parent vessel beyond aneurysm in which the double lumen can rarely be seen. We had two cases of dissecting aneurysms which were managed by aneurysm and parent vessel occlusion. Aneurysms have predilection for P1 and P2 segments of PCA and affect relatively younger patients.[2]

Most of the PCA aneurysms are usually giant aneurysms (almost 23% of PCA aneurysms versus 3%–5% at other anatomic sites).[3],[4] We had three giant aneurysms (27%). Large and giant aneurysms generally present with signs of mass effect on the surrounding brain parenchyma, resulting in hydrocephalus, seizures, or other neurological deficits.[5] One of our patients, who had a giant saccular aneurysm of the P3 segment compressing the brain stem and hippocampus, presented with memory loss. One patient had a serpentine aneurysm with parieto-occipital and calcarine arteries arising from the neck of the aneurysm.

Patients with ruptured aneurysms present with sudden onset of severe headache related to SAH.[6] In our series, five (50%) patients presented with SAH of which two were dissecting aneurysms. Treatment strategy differ when treating in acute phase after SAH in dissecting aneurysm, its parent artery occlusion which is generally recommended in this setting, whereas in chronic phase stent-assisted coiling with long-term antiplatelets can be undertaken.[8]

Selective endovascular coil obliteration of the aneurysmal sac with or without parent artery occlusion is the treatment of choice for PCA aneurysms. Berry aneurysms with narrow neck (<4 mm) are effectively treated with endovascular obliteration using GDC coils. However, giant aneurysms with wide necks need balloon or stent-assisted procedure to avoid poor packing of the coils and/or encroachment on the parent artery. Though preservation of antegrade flow in the PCA is one of the prime objectives, but fusiform or giant serpentine aneurysms may need parent artery occlusion. There are several reports which showed that parent vessel occlusion is equally effective as selective aneurismal coiling and this was mainly due to microvasculature of PCA.[9],[10],[11],[12],[13],[14] One of our previous case report where parent vessel occlusion was done in a fusiform aneurysm of PCA also stated the effectivity of the technique.[13]

Collateral supply to PCA territory exists at multiple levels, viz, 1) collaterals through the perforating branches and leptomeningeal collaterals, 2) anterior and posterior choroidal arteries, 3) pericallosal–splenial arteries, and 4) cortical branch collaterals between PCA and MCA.[15] However, the degree of collateralization is difficult to assess. Many reports have shown the safety of parent vessel occlusion in PCA aneurysms. Two main techniques of balloon test occlusion are utilized: 1) clinical assessment during balloon occlusion and 2) assessment of retrograde opacification of PCA branches during balloon occlusion. We use angiographic assessment of collaterals opacifying PCA branches. These techniques of balloon test occlusion are elaborated in article by Piotin and Moret [12]; nevertheless, these technique have both false-positive and false-negative rates and is also technically demanding. Balloon occlusion itself carries a risk of vessel rupture.

Parent vessel occlusion in proximal PCA aneurysm (P1 segment) is not always safe; it might lead to occlusion of the perforator resulting in thalamic infarct. Preservation of visualized perforator is mandatory during embolization/parent vessel occlusion.[10] Parent vessel occlusion beyond P3 segment is relatively safe, but then also, sometimes it may lead to some inevitable neurological deficits or cortical blindness. In one of our cases where PAO was done, the patient had developed initial hemiparesis which was due to occlusion of posterior choroidal artery which was arising at that level. Balloon occlusion test in that case had showed poor collateral supply from MCA branches, but we went with parent vessel occlusion as flowdivertors was out of question due to cost. This patient developed neurological deficits but recovered on follow-up.

In one of our patients, no distal PCA branches beyond aneurysm were seen and no collaterals from the ICA side were noted, but after aneurysm coiling along with parent vessel occlusion, collaterals from the MCA were noted. Thus, if a patient is tolerating and no collaterals are seen before occlusion, it does not mean collaterals are not there and they become angiographically visible after aneurysm and parent vessel occlusion. Parent artery occlusion is an accepted treatment as much of the literature supports it, but there is no literature suggesting where other treatment than parent vessel occlusion is to be done. We suggest that in those cases where the distal vessel is large and is filling in early phase of angiogram, it needs to be protected either by bypass surgery or by endovascular means such as stent-assisted coiling or flowdivertor. There is significance of critical evaluation of the angiogram and to decide the distal vessel lumen and when it is filling.

PCA to occipital bypass surgery has limited experience and a appraisal of this procedure done in one of the large series by Chang et al. who have stated that it carries higher risk of complications than once thought and reported by earlier small series.[16]

With the advances in endovascular tools, such as smaller size stents and flowdivertors, in some of the selected cases, coiling of the aneurysm with preservation of the parent vessel should be done, but this requires long-term antiplatelet intake. These can specifically done in unruptured aneurysms with no collateral or poor collateral supply.[11] There is limited literature available regarding use of braided stent or flowdivertor in distal PCA; however, we used them in two of our cases, and on follow-up, there was total occlusion of the aneurysm with patent distal vessel. A stent/flowdivertor is likely to avoid immediate ischemic consequences, the price being antiplatelet therapy. Delayed stent occlusion, if it happens, may be better tolerated due to slow occlusion and chance to develop collaterals as we have seen in anterior circulation. On the contrary if delayed aneurysm recurrence is seen, further treatment or parent vessel occlusion is still an option.

No procedure is without complications; we had one major ischemic complication where hemiparesis occurred which recovered over a period of time and no other major disabling ischemic complication occurred.[12] Recurrence rate of endovascular coiling is reported to be as high as 22%, but for parent vessel occlusion, recurrences are not known.[16] None of our patient had recurrence even on follow-up, which we did with both MRA and DSA.

Obstructive hydrocephalus was noted in two of our patients, for which ventriculo-peritoneal shunting was done. Both these patients did well on follow-up study with mRS scores of 2. Some of our patients experienced transient headache for 6 weeks that was presumed to be because of initial rise in the aneurysmal volume when aneurismal thrombosis begins which causes surrounding brain compression and mass effect. This headache resolved with time.

In cases where aneurysm coiling along with parent vessel occlusion is done post-procedure steroids and low molecular weight heparin is given to avoid edema and sudden thrombosis of the aneurysm. Keeping the blood pressure on higher side initially for few days also helps in developing functional collaterals in such cases of PAO; these small things should be well emphasized while treating these aneurysms.

 » Conclusion Top

PCA aneurysms are usually large aneurysms that affect younger population with predilection to female gender. Endovascular procedures are safe, and as PCA has good collateralizations, parent artery occlusion is a viable option. In the era of flowdivertors, parent vessel occlusion is a low-cost option giving long lasting results in country like us with no significant procedural morbidity.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 » References Top

Saeki N, Rhoton AL Jr. Microsurgical anatomy of the upper basilar artery and the posterior circle of Willis. J Neurosurg 1977;46:563-78.  Back to cited text no. 1
Gerber CJ, Neil-Dwyer G. A review of the management of 15 cases of aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery. Br J Neurosurg 1992;6:521-7.  Back to cited text no. 2
Ferrante L, Acqui M, Trillo' G, Lunardi P, Fortuna A. Aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery: Do they present specific characteristics? Acta Neurochir (Wien) 1996;138:840-52.  Back to cited text no. 3
Sakata S, Fujii K, Matsushima T, Fujiwara S, Fukui M, Matsubara T, et al. Aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery: Report of eleven cases-surgical approaches and procedures. Neurosurgery 1993;32:163-8.  Back to cited text no. 4
Fukamachi A, Hirato M, Wakao T, Kawafuchi J. Giant serpentine aneurysm of the posterior cerebral artery. Neurosurgery 1982;11:271-6.  Back to cited text no. 5
Yacubian EM, Rosemberg S, da Silva HC, Jorge CL, de Oliveira E, de Assis LM. Intractable complex partial seizures associated with posterior cerebral artery giant aneurysm: A case report. Epilepsia 1994;36:1317-20.  Back to cited text no. 6
Pia HW, Fontana H. Aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery. Locations and clinical pictures. Acta Neurochir (Wien) 1977;38:13-35.  Back to cited text no. 7
Oran I, Cinar C, Yaǧci B, Tarhan S, Kiroǧlu Y, Serter S. Ruptured dissecting aneurysms arising from non-vertebral arteries of the posterior circulation: Endovascular treatment perspective. Diagn Interv Radiol 2009;15:159-65.  Back to cited text no. 8
Van Rooij WJ, Sluzewski M, Beute GN. Endovascular treatment of posterior cerebral artery aneurysms. Am J Neuroradiol 2006;27:300-5.  Back to cited text no. 9
Ciceri EF, Klucznik RP, Grossman RG, Rose JE, Mawad ME. Aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery: Classification and endovascular treatment. Am J Neuroradiol 2001;22:27-34.  Back to cited text no. 10
Lv X, Li Y, Jiang C, Wu Z. Endovascular management for P2 aneurysms of the posterior cerebral artery: Experience on proximal occlusion of the P2 segment. Interv Neuroradiol 2009;15:341-8.  Back to cited text no. 11
Hallacq P, Piotin M, Moret J. Endovascular occlusion of the posterior cerebral artery for the treatment of P2 segment aneurysms: Retrospective review of a 10-year series. Am J Neuroradiol 2002;23:1128-36.  Back to cited text no. 12
Sawlani V, Handique A, Phadke RV. Endovascular parent artery occlusion in a fusiform aneurysm of posterior cerebral artery. Clin Radiol 2004;59:954-60.  Back to cited text no. 13
Zhao ZW, Deng JP, Gao L, Gao GD. Endovascular management of posterior cerebral artery aneurysms. Initial experience. Interv Neuroradiol 2008;14:253-8.  Back to cited text no. 14
Zeal AA, Rhoton AL. Microsurgical anatomy of the posterior cerebral artery. J Neurosurg 1978;48:534-9.  Back to cited text no. 15
Chang SW, Abla AA, Kakarla UK, Sauvageau E, Dashti SR, Nakaji P, et al. Treatment of distal posterior cerebral artery aneurysms: A critical appraisal of the occipital artery-to-posterior cerebral artery bypass. Neurosurgery 2010;67:16-25; discussion 25-6.  Back to cited text no. 16


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4], [Figure 5], [Figure 6], [Figure 7], [Figure 8], [Figure 9]

  [Table 1]

This article has been cited by
1 Braided stents assisted coiling for endovascular management of posterior cerebral artery aneurysms: a preliminary mid-term experience
Haishuang Tang, Chenghao Shang, Guanghao Zhang, Qiao Zuo, Xiaoxi Zhang, Fengfeng Xu, Yi Xu, Rui Zhao, Qinghai Huang, Qiang Li, Jianmin Liu
Neuroradiology. 2022;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
2 Natural history and management of posterior cerebral artery aneurysms: a systematic review and meta-analysis of individual patient data
Muhammed Amir Essibayi, Soliman H. Oushy, Zafer Keser, Giuseppe Lanzino
Neurosurgical Review. 2022;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
3 Efficacy of Liquid Embolic Agent Treatment in Hemorrhagic Peripheral Intracranial Aneurysms: A Single-Center Experience
Zong Zhuang, Qi Zhu, Xun-Zhi Liu, Hai-Ping Ling, Shi-Jie Na, Tao Liu, Yu-Hua Zhang, Chun-Hua Hang, Kai-Dong Liu, Qing-Rong Zhang
Brain Sciences. 2022; 12(9): 1264
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
4 Down-The-Barrel Working Projection for Coiling Selected Bifurcation Aneurysms in A Single-Plane Angiosuite
MadanMohan Balaguruswamy, Sampathkumar Palanisamy, Ezaz Mohamed
Neurology India. 2022; 70(5): 2180
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
5 Combined Sub-temporal and Pterional Exposure for Clipping of Posterior Cerebral Artery Aneurysm
Girish Menon, ArlaSai Varsha, Vinod Kumar, Ajay Hegde
Journal of Cerebrovascular Sciences. 2021; 9(2): 115
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
6 Traumatic dissecting pathology of posterior cerebral artery: a report of two cases—aneurysm and pial arteriovenous fistula
Vignesh Selvamurugan, Surya Nandan Prasad, Vivek Singh, Zafar Neyaz
BMJ Case Reports. 2021; 14(5): e237722
[Pubmed] | [DOI]


Print this article  Email this article
Online since 20th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow