Computational modeling of the flow in cerebral aneurysms is an evolving technique that may play an important role in surgical planning. In this study, we simulated the flow in a giant basilar aneurysm before and after surgical takedown of one vertebral artery. Patient-specific geometry and flowrates obtained from magnetic resonance (MR) angiography and velocimetry were used to simulate the flow prior to and after the surgery. Numerical solutions for steady and pulsatile flows were obtained. Highly three-dimensional flows, with strong secondary flows, were computed in the aneurysm in the presurgical and postsurgical conditions. The computational results predicted that occlusion of a vertebral artery would result in a significant increase of the slow flow region formed in the bulge of the aneurysm, where increased particle residence time and velocities lower than 2.5 cms were computed. The region of slow flow was found to have filled with thrombus following surgery. Predictions of numerical simulation methods are consistent with the observed outcome following surgical treatment of an aneurysm. The study demonstrates that computational models may provide hypotheses to test in future studies, and might offer guidance for the interventional treatment of cerebral aneurysms.
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