WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - New Hanover Regional Medical Center is the first hospital in the state to perform a new aneurysm treatment using a device that looks like a small, mesh basket.
Dr. Vinodh Doss, the director of interventional neurology at NHRMC, said this is a safer option than traditional treatments because it involves less time doctors are in someone’s brain.
Other options to treat a brain aneurysm include using coils and a stent or removing part of the skull and putting a clip at the base of the aneurysm. This procedure places one device as opposed to two in a patient’s brain.
Other treatments can require blood thinners afterwards, not always good for a patient, according to Dr. Doss.
“Whenever you can reduce the risk of procedure stents, blood thinners, things like that, it serves the patient better," he said.
Doss said the device is “one and done,” meaning it deploys into the brain and stays there for the rest of the patient’s life.
The procedure time is also significantly shorter. It takes 30 minutes compared to a few hours for other treatments, he said.
“This revolutionizes our thinking of treating these aneurysms going forward in the United States," Doss said.
The Food and Drug Administration approved the device a few months ago, and Doss performed the first procedure with it on March 20. He said the device also has great results as far as long-term efficacy.
Tammie Parris suffered a near-fatal brain aneurysm exactly seven years ago. She was air lifted from New Hanover Regional to a hospital in Chapel Hill because the doctors at New Hanover couldn’t treat her for the rupture in her brain.
“I don’t remember much, but what I do remember was a terrible, terrible headache and being nauseous. Then everything kind of went out from there," she said.
“I have health care professionals tell me all the time that statistically you should not be here," she said.
Parris said if this technology existed when she had her aneurysm, it may have helped her in the long term.
“If something could’ve been done right then and right there, I probably wouldn’t have had to endure a six month recovery period. Things could have gone a little faster," she said.
Parris had to relearn how to drive, and used a walker to regain her walker and a cane to help her walk on her own again. She wants others to who may go through a similar experience to know they’re in good hands with this new procedure.
“To the people who this may potentially happen to, rest easy because now, New Hanover can do this,” Parris said.
She now raises awareness about brain aneurysms, and educates others about them. Parris convinced former North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory to declare September brain aneurysm awareness month.