Background: Intraventricular haemorrhages (IVHs) caused by bleeding aneurysms are critical conditions that often carry a severe prognosis. Two main problems must be urgently dealt with: the secondary damage caused by intraventricular clotting and the risk of early rebleeding. A protocol of ultra-early endoscopic ventricular evacuation, after securing the aneurysm with coils, is proposed to solve this challenge in the acute phase and within a few hours of onset.
Methods: Ten consecutive patients presenting with haematocephalus from aneurysm rupture were treated in our institute with coiling and endoscopic clot aspiration extended to the whole ventricular system. The only inclusion criteria were the presence of a massive IVH and an aneurysm appropriate for coiling. Computed tomography scans obtained before (within 4 h of symptom onset in all patients) and immediately after surgery were compared for Graeb score and ventriculocranial ratio (VCR); the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) was assessed at 1 year.
Result: All patients were treated within 2 days of onset. The procedure resulted in a mean 58% removal of ventricular blood and decrease of hydrocephalus; the mean (standard deviation (SD)) Graeb score reduced from 11.5 (0.7) to 4.7 (2.2) (p<0.001) and mean ventriculocranial ratio from 0.26 (0.06) to 0.17 (0.05) (p<0.001). No rebleeding or delayed hydrocephalus needing shunt was observed. Mortality at 1 year was 30%; marked disability (GOS = 3) and good recovery (GOS = 5) were observed in 40% and 30% of patients, respectively.
Conclusions: Early neuroendoscopic removal of blood casting from the lateral to the fourth ventricle after coiling of bleeding aneurysms is a feasible approach, allowing in most instances the rapid improvement of the IVH.
- GOS, Glasgow Outcome Scale
- IVH, intraventricular haemorrhage
- SAH, subarachnoid haemorrhage
- VCR, ventriculocranial ratio
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Published Online First 11 July 2006
Competing interests: None.