Are the Calcium Antagonists Really Useful in Cerebral Aneurysmal Surgery? A Retrospective Study

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FROM 1983 TO 1990, 234 patients with one or several cerebral arterial aneurysms were surgically treated in our department. Since 1983, we have been performing surgery as early as possible. As soon as the subarachnoid hemorrhage diagnosis is confirmed by computed tomography (or if unconfirmed, by lumbar puncture), we assume that each patient may have an aneurysm. Between 1987 and 1990, 111 patients were treated by vascular volume expansion (maintenance of central venous pressure above 5 cm H2O with 4% albumin or Ringer-lactate or, if necessary, with 20% albumin), which we supplemented with calcium antagonists (nimodipine in 60 patients and nicardipine in 51 patients). Two months after being discharged, each patient is examined by a neurosurgeon and, on the same day, is subjected to a neuropsychological evaluation and a computed tomographic scan of the brain. A few months after this consultation, a working-position/family-activities questionnaire is issued to the patient. All of the results studied on the basis of postoperative mortality, second-month computed tomographic scan ischemia, neuropsychological evaluation, and return to work show no significant difference between the groups with or without calcium antagonists or between the nimodipine and nicardipine subgroups.

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