Treatment and outcome in 30 patients with posterior cerebral artery aneurysms

Christopher L. Taylor, Thomas A. Kopitnik, Duke S. Samson, Phillip D. Purdy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Object. The records of 30 patients with posterior cerebral artery (PCA) aneurysms treated during a 12-year period were reviewed to determine outcome and the risk of visual field deficit associated with PCA sacrifice. Methods. Clinical data and treatment summaries for all patients were maintained in an electronic database. The Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) and modified Rankin Scale (mRS) scores were determined by an independent registrar. Visual field changes were determined by review of medical records. Twenty-eight patients were treated with open surgery, one of them after an attempt at detachable coil embolization failed. Two patients underwent successful endovascular PCA sacrifice. The mean GOS and mRS scores in 18 patients with unruptured aneurysms were 4 and 2, respectively, at discharge. Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) from other aneurysms and neurological deficits caused by the PCA lesion or underlying disease contributed to poor outcomes in this group. The mean GOS and mRS scores in 12 patients with ruptured aneurysms were 4 and 4, respectively, at discharge. One patient died of severe vasospasm. Neurological deficits secondary to SAH and, in one patient, treatment of a concomitant arteriovenous malformation contributed to poor outcomes in the patients with ruptured aneurysms. Seven patients with normal visual function preoperatively underwent PCA occlusion. One patient (14%) developed a new visual field deficit. Conclusions. Optimal treatment of PCA aneurysms is performed via one of several surgical approaches or by endovascular therapy. The approach is determined, in part, by the anatomical location and size of the aneurysm and the presence of underlying disease and neurological deficits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-22
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 2003


  • Cerebral aneurysm
  • Endovascular therapy
  • Microsurgery
  • Posterior cerebral artery
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage
  • Treatment outcome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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