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Successful Stenting

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Friday, June 29, 2018 - 13:00

By Athos Patsalides, MD

It was six years ago that we treated our first patient using venous sinus stenting – an innovative procedure that widens a narrowed vein inside the brain. She was a delightful young woman who had been diagnosed with pseudotumor cerebri and was losing vision due to high intracranial pressure. After the venous sinus stenting, the patient recovered her vision completely and all the other symptoms of increased intracranial pressure were also resolved. She has been doing very well ever since.

In the years since then, we at the Weill Cornell Medicine Brain and Spine Center have been at the forefront of venous sinus stenting treatment. We were the first group to design a clinical trial for this new treatment, and we worked with the FDA to ensure the highest quality of care and robust clinical research. We have developed ways to perform this procedure in the least invasive and safest possible way and we have expanded the indications to treat patients with a variety of problems, including pulsatile tinnitus.

Our venous sinus stenting program has been very successful, and we have now treated more than 100 patients. The majority have been treated for pseudotumor cerebri, but we have also treated patients with pulsatile tinnitus, venous sinus thrombosis, and dural arteriovenous fistula. We have treated children as young as 20 months and adults as old as 60. Our patients come from all over the United States and from overseas.

The results of this treatment speak for themselves. We have published our work in prestigious journals and presented our experience in every major national and international meeting (see a list of our papers about the stenting procedure), and we have established ourselves as one of the premier groups for this treatment with an international reputation.

All this work, however, would be meaningless without the genuine gratification we get from helping our patients. We know they trusted us with their lives, and we are grateful to them for trusting us and allowing us to perform a new and innovative treatment. I am personally indebted to them as they are testament to the benefits and safety if this treatment.  (Nearly a dozen of them have been profiled online: Read about Allyson Tlacoxolal, Dr. Randal Orton, and Kate Metzler, or see a list of the other patient success stories.)

I am also thankful to the members of our team who work tirelessly and make all necessary arrangements for our patients: Oscar Lleva, Sharon Ramos, Simone Gowrie, and Arleen Navarro from my office and Lisa Treahan from Dr. Dinkin’s and Dr. Oliveira’s office. They are the pillars of this program and I am truly grateful for their help and dedication. I am proud to work and collaborate with them.


More about stenting

More about Dr. Patsalides