Neuro-interventional Radiology is a subspeciality in which radiologists perform minimally invasive, image-guided procedures to locate and treat conditions of the central nervous system.
The minimally invasive treatment of acute stroke and brain aneurysms are two examples of neuro-intervention that are likely to become increasingly important in healthcare. These highly specialised procedures can be potentially life-saving and are currently performed at SCP.
In acute ischemic stroke (where a clot forms in a blood vessel and prevents blood and oxygen from reaching parts of the brain), mechanical thrombectomy is used to remove the clot and to restore blood flow.
It is often used in addition to thrombolysis (using medication to dissolve the clot) as an emergency treatment for acute stroke and, depending on the scenario, could significantly improve outcomes for the patient.
Cerebral aneurysm treatment
A cerebral or brain aneurysm is a small, balloon-like bulge that forms at a weak spot in a blood vessel in the brain. Some aneurysms pose a risk of rupturing which, in turn, can easily cause the patient’s death or catastrophic cerebral damage.
Specialists in neuro-interventional radiology can use minimally invasive endovascular treatment to prevent cerebral aneurysms from rupturing, and 90% of aneurysms can be successfully treated in this way. Ruptured aneurysms can also be treated to prevent rebleeding.
Not all aneurysms need to be treated and advice can be given regarding rupture risk and indications for treatment.
As with any other invasive procedure, the intervention isn’t free of risk and therefore the risk of every individual patient and aneurysm is considered before deciding on the treatment .
Other neuro-interventional procedures
Other procedures in neuro-interventional radiology that are performed at SCP Radiology, include the following:
Treatment and guidance on arteriovenous malformations (AVM)
A condition in which arteries and veins connect irregularly, disrupting normal directional blood and oxygen flow. Pressure in these malformations weaken the blood vessels over time and may cause them to rupture.
Pre-surgical tumour embolisation
A procedure in which blood supply to a tumour is decreased in preparation for surgical removal.
A procedure in which blood supply to the nasal region is decreased to treat life-threatening nose bleads.
Inferior petrosal sinus sampling
A test to diagnose the cause of hormonal disorders by sampling blood from veins at the base of the skull which drain blood from the pituitary gland.
Transverse sinus stenting for benign intracranial hypertension or pulsatile tinnitis
This involves the placing of a stent in a narrowed segment of a vein at the back of the head to improve outflow.