Dr. Aaron Dumont

The Tulane Neuroscience Center’s commitment to the latest technology and treatments was demonstrated again earlier this week when its neurosurgery team became the first in the Gulf South region to successfully deploy an innovative new treatment for brain aneurysms, just two months after it was approved for use in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration.

“This new procedure really changes the landscape of how we treat these types of aneurysms,” said Dr. Aaron Dumont, who performed the procedure along with Dr. Peter Amenta and Dr. John Nerva. “These are typically treated with an invasive brain surgery.

“Now, we have a new, minimally invasive technique that is much safer and more efficient. The procedure took 20 minutes, the patient went home the next day, and he’s doing great.”

A brain aneurysm is an abnormal bulging or ballooning of an artery in the brain caused by weakness in the vessel wall. These aneurysms fill with blood and can rupture, causing serious problems including severe functional disability, cognitive loss and even death.

Often aneurysms that occur where one vessel splits to two can have a wide base and require a surgical solution, in which a physician performs brain surgery and blocks blood flow to the aneurysm by applying a small metal clip to its base.

The WEB™ Aneurysm Embolization System deployed at Tulane Medical Center uses a catheter to insert a small device in a patient’s leg that then travels up an artery and into the brain. There, the device expands into a tiny basket with ultra-fine wires braided together. This mesh stabilizes the aneurysm and prevents it from rupturing.

“This has been used in Europe for quite some time, and it has had really excellent results there,” Dr. Dumont said. “We are thrilled to be among the first to offer it to patients here in the United States.”

This new device also provides several advantages when compared to traditional procedures like the use of endovascular stents, Dr. Dumont said. The WEB™ system uses just one device to treat challenging aneurysms that often require multiple implants, he said, and it may reduce the time it takes to perform the procedure while also reducing the amount of medication the patient requires after the procedure.

“From creating the first Comprehensive Stroke Program in the city of New Orleans to offering the region’s first robotic guidance and navigation system for spine surgery, we are committed to providing our patients the very best and latest technology and treatments,” said Dr. William Lunn, Tulane Health System’s president and CEO. “I applaud Dr. Dumont and his team for their continued pursuit of knowledge and innovation.”

To learn more about the Tulane Neuroscience Center and its services, please call (504) 988-5561 or visit Tulane Healthcare.