Use of Pipeline Embolization Devices for treatment of a direct carotid-cavernous fistula

E. Nossek, D. Zumofen, E. Nelson, E. Raz, M. B. Potts, K. G. Desousa, O. Tanweer, M. Shapiro, T. Becske, Howard A. Riina*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Background: The use of minimally porous endoluminal devices (MPEDs) such as the Pipeline Embolization Device (PED) has been described for the treatment of brain aneurysms. The benefit of using MPEDs to assist embolization of a direct high-flow carotid cavernous fistula resulting from a ruptured cavernous carotid artery aneurysm is not well documented. Methods: We describe our experience with deploying a tailored multidevice PED construct across the cavernous internal carotid artery (ICA) wall defect in combination with transarterial coil embolization using the “jailed microcatheter” technique. Results: A 59-year-old woman presented with acute left-sided ophthalmoplegia. Diagnostic cerebral angiography demonstrated a ruptured giant cavernous carotid aneurysm with fistulous outflow via the ipsilateral left superior ophthalmic vein and into the pterygoid venous plexi bilaterally. Via the Marksman microcatheter, a total of three PEDs measuring 4.5 mm × 18 mm, 4.5 mm × 20 mm, and 4.75 mm × 16 mm were telescoped within the ICA across the aneurysm neck. Coiling of the aneurysm fundus and cavernous sinus via the “jailed” Rapidtransit microcatheter was subsequently achieved. A 2-year follow-up digital subtraction angiography (DSA) demonstrated stable obliteration of the aneurysm and the fistula, coincident with complete resolution of the patient’s symptoms. Conclusions: Based on our long-term clinical and angiographic results, we advocate that the presented method be a valid treatment option for selected cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1125-1130
Number of pages6
JournalActa Neurochirurgica
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 19 2015


  • Aneurysm
  • Brain
  • Carotid-cavernous fistula
  • Minimally porous endoluminal devices
  • Pipeline embolization device

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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