OBJECTIVE: Mechanical thrombectomy (MTB) is a treatment of reference for acute ischemic stroke due to large brain vessel occlusion but some concerns remain about its use in small distal branches. In the present study, we assessed the efficacy and the safety of distal MTB using the Catch Mini (CM) stent retriever.
METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed a prospectively maintained database of all consecutive patients who underwent MTB for a distal intracranial occlusion with the Catch Mini device at our hospital.
RESULTS: Forty-one patient underwent MTB for distal intracranial occlusions using the CM stent retriever. Good capillary reperfusion (TICT≥2b) was observed in 32 out of 41 patients (78%). Focal ischemia within the territory vascularized by the artery addressed by the CM was observed in 8 patients (19.5%). Post-procedural vasospasm was observed in 8 patients, all responding rapidly to vasodilatator administration. Two asymptomatic hemorrhages (4.9%) were noted on follow-up imaging (one patechial hemorrhage and one parenchymal hematoma) in patients with M2 occlusions. No vessel rupture were observed. Overall, good neurological outcome at three months (mRS≤2) was observed in 28 (out of 34 patients followed; 82.4%) of patients.
CONCLUSIONS: Our single-center experience shows that the CM stent retriever is safe and effective for the recanalization of small diameter distal branches feeding eloquent brain areas.