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The minipterional approach for ruptured and unruptured anterior circulation aneurysms: Our initial experience

1 Department of Neurosurgery, School of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
2 Department of Surgery, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA
3 Department of Neurosurgery, Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Correspondence Address:
Kenan A Alkhalili,
Department of Neurosurgery, School of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

Objective: To report our experience with the  minipterional (MPT) craniotomy approach for anterior circulation aneurysms and to discuss the clinical outcomes as well as to evaluate the advantages of this unique approach. Materials and Methods: Single-center retrospective review of 57 cases involving anterior circulation aneurysms both ruptured and unruptured aneurysms treated with the MPT. We analyzed the clinical and patient demographic data, aneurysm characteristics, surgical outcomes, and complications in these individuals. Results: Between July 2008 and March 2014, of the 57 patients reviewed: 45 had middle cerebral artery (MCA), 6 had internal carotid artery terminus, and 7 had posterior communicating artery aneurysms. 20 of the 57 patients presented with a ruptured aneurysm. The average aneurysm size was 5.8 mm. The length of hospitalization for unruptured aneurysm cases ranged between 3 and 5 days. The average follow-up for all cases was 21.5 months. Successful clipping of the aneurysms was obtained in all patients. None of the cases required additional skin incisions or craniotomy extensions. The overall surgical outcomes were favorable. There was no postoperative facial nerve damage, temporalis muscle wasting, or symptoms of paresthesias around the incision line. Two patients developed a postoperative stroke manifested as symptoms of unilateral arm and facial weakness, receptive aphasia, and dysarthria. Conclusion: The MPT provides a reliable and less invasive alternative to the standard pterional craniotomy. Furthermore, ruptured and unruptured anterior circulation aneurysms can safely and effectively be treated with limited bone removal which provides better cosmetic outcomes and excellent postoperative temporalis muscle function.

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