OBJECTIVE Treatment of ruptured aneurysms arising from small-caliber (< 2.5 mm) or distal vessels beyond the circle of Willis is considered challenging with all treatment modalities. Recently, the Flow Re-Direction Endoluminal Device Junior (FRED Jr) stent, designed for flow diversion in small arteries, was approved in the United States for the treatment of nonruptured aneurysms. Here, the authors report their experience using this device in the setting of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). METHODS Clinical and radiological records of patients sustaining SAH treated with a FRED Jr stent between June 2020 and October 2022 were reviewed. Treatment course, including antiplatelet therapy, external ventricular drain (EVD) management, and vasospasm, and clinical outcomes were analyzed. Angiographic results were assessed according to the O’Kelly-Marotta (OKM) grading scale. RESULTS Nine patients at a median age of 62 (range 27–75) years were included. The median Hunt and Hess grade was II (IQR I) and the median modified Fisher grade was 4 (IQR 1). Aneurysm morphology types included saccular (6 patients), blister (1 patient), and dissecting (2 patients), and the aneurysms were located at the anterior communicating artery complex (n = 3) at the A2/A3 (n = 3), M2/M3 (n = 1), V4 (n = 1), and P2 (n = 1) arterial segments. All stents were deployed successfully with no intraprocedural complications. Postoperatively, no rebleeding events were encountered. Vasospasm therapy was initiated in 6 patients, and no symptomatic EVD-related hematomas were observed. Postoperative ischemic events were encountered in 2 patients. The median 3-month modified Rankin Scale score was 2 (IQR 1) for the 7 surviving patients, and 3-month radiographic follow-up revealed OKM grade D in 4 of 7 patients. CONCLUSIONS Flow diversion using the FRED Jr stent is feasible as a potential treatment strategy for acutely ruptured aneurysms arising from small-caliber vessels. The complication profile reported in this series is comparable to those of historical microsurgical cohorts, and effective protection was conferred by this treatment modality. Therefore, our small cohort provides a glimpse into a new tool for successfully achieving acute flow diversion for this subset of difficult-to-treat aneurysms.
- FRED Jr
- flow diversion
- ruptured aneurysms
- small-caliber cerebral vessels