Endovascular therapy is a minimally invasive procedure that accesses the treatment area from within the blood vessel. In the case of aneurysms, this treatment is called coil embolisation, or “coiling”. In contrast to surgery, endovascular coiling does not require open surgery. Instead, physicians use real-time X-ray technology, called fluoroscopic imaging, to visualize the patient’s vascular system and treat the disease from inside the blood vessel.
Endovascular treatment of brain aneurysms involves insertion of a catheter (small plastic tube) into the femoral artery in the patient’s leg and navigating it through the vascular system, into the head and then into the aneurysm. Tiny platinum coils are threaded through the catheter and deployed into the aneurysm, blocking blood flow into the aneurysm and preventing rupture. The coils are made of platinum so that they are visible via X-ray and flexible enough to conform to the aneurysm shape. This endovascular coiling, or filling of the aneurysm is called embolisation and is performed under general anesthesia. More than 1,50,000 patients worldwide have been treated with detachable platinum coils.