Aneurysm of the left middle cerebral artery caused by myxoid degeneration of the vessel wall.
Myxoid degeneration of arterial walls may result in dissection and dissecting aneurysms in extracranial and intracranial portions of cerebral arteries. Rarely, saccular aneurysms may also develop on that basis, but thus far these have only been reported in the cervical portions of the carotid arteries. We describe a case of a nondissecting aneurysm of the left middle cerebral artery caused by myxoid degeneration of the media.
A 39-year-old man had acute onset of frontal headache and neck stiffness. Computed tomographic scan and lumbar puncture established the presence of subarachnoid hemorrhage. Angiography demonstrated a left middle cerebral artery aneurysm. This was clipped and the wall biopsied. Microscopically the entire thickness of the vascular wall showed marked myxoid alterations. No dissection was present. The patient had an uneventful recovery.
This observation confirms that myxoid degeneration of arterial walls may cause aneurysms with eventual rupture even in the absence of dissection. Rare cases of this type of aneurysm have been reported to occur in the cervical portions of the carotid arteries, but this is the first reported observation of such changes involving an intracerebral artery.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association