Primary balloon angioplasty of venous Sinus stenosis in idiopathic intracranial hypertension

Juan Carlos Martinez-Gutierrez, Matthew J. Kole, Victor Lopez-Rivera, Mehmet Enes Inam, Rosa Tang, Nagham Al-Zubidi, Ore Ofeoluwatomi Adesina, Elvira Lekka, Allison C. Engstrom, Sunil Sheth, Claudia Pedroza, Arthur L. Day, Peng Roc Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Venous sinus stenosis (VSS) stenting has emerged as an effective treatment for patients with Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH). However, stenting carries risk of in-stent stenosis/thrombosis and cumulative bleeding risk from long-term dual antiplatelet (DAPT) use. Thus, we investigated the potential safety and efficacy of primary balloon angioplasty as an alternative to stenting in IIH.

METHODS: A prospectively maintained single-center registry of IIH patients undergoing endovascular procedures was queried. Inclusion criteria included patients with confirmed IIH and angiographically demonstrable VSS who underwent interventions from 2012- 2021. Patients were dichotomized into primary balloon angioplasty (Group A) and primary stenting (Group S), comparing clinical outcomes using bivariate analyses.

RESULTS: 62 patients were included with median age of 33 [IQR 26-37], 74% females. Group A (9/62) and Group S (53/62) had similar baseline characteristics. Papilledema improvement was higher in Group S at 6 weeks and 6 months (44 vs. 93, p = 0.002 and 44 vs. 92%, p = 0.004), with similar improvements across all symptoms. Group S had higher mean post-procedure venous pressure gradient change (8 vs. 3 mmHg, p = 0.02) and a lower CSF opening pressure at 6 months (23 vs. 36 cmH2O, p < 0.001). VPS rescue rate was higher in Group A (44 vs. 2%, p = 0.001). There was only one procedural complications; a subdural hematoma in Group A.

CONCLUSIONS: Primary VSS balloon angioplasty provides a marginal and short-lived improvement of IIH symptoms compared to stenting. These findings suggest a cautious and limited role for short-term rescue angioplasty in poor shunting and stenting candidates with refractory IIH.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)358-362
Number of pages5
JournalInterventional Neuroradiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2023


  • angioplasty
  • intracranial pressure
  • stenosis
  • stent
  • Cranial Sinuses/surgery
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Constriction, Pathologic/therapy
  • Female
  • Stents/adverse effects
  • Intracranial Hypertension
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Angioplasty, Balloon
  • Pseudotumor Cerebri/diagnostic imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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