Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States with a high morbidity
rate for both ischemic and hemorrhagic strokes. Although the majority of stokes
that occur are ischemic, these patients have a high chance of survivability if treated.
However, 50% of patients with hemorrhagic stroke, prognosis of death within the
first six months is high. Hemorrhagic strokes typically occur due to rupture of an
intracerebral aneurysm (i.e., a portion of a neurovasculature that has ballooned out
due to disease-induced weakening). Current treatment methods are moving toward
less invasive techniques to treat aneurysms before rupture occurs, one particularly
compelling example of which is the flow diverter (FDs). These devices redirect
flow away from the aneurysm sac, and they have been shown to allow for healing
of the diseased tissue. Flow diverters are currently fabricated by braiding individual
wires into a mesh-like structure. However, due to this design, coupled with the
typical location of the aneurysms being treated, there is a high chance of occluding
small perforator arteries as well. Our lab is developing a new concept for FD design,
enabled by novel MEMS fabrication techniques we have pioneered, which seeks to
address this limitation via use of high-aspect-ratio (height-to-width ratio) struts.
The study described herein, has sought to explore the effect of device placement
and strut thickness on flow diversion performance within this context.