We report our experience with the use of the antifibrinolytic agent ε-aminocaproic acid (EACA), Amicar, as an adjuvant to endovascular treatment of cranial arteriovenous fistulae. We also review applications of antifibrinolytic agents to neurovascular disorders and discuss the mechanism of action, dosing strategy, contraindications, and possible complications associated with the use of EACA. We identified 13 patients with cranial arteriovenous fistulae (five direct carotid cavernous fistulae [CCF], seven dural arteriovenous fistulae [DAVF], and one vein of Galen malformation) who received EACA as an adjunct to endovascular treatment. In all cases embolic coils were the primary embolic agent. We reviewed the modes of initial endovascular therapy and angiographic findings immediately thereafter and the response to EACA. Two direct CCF and two DAVF were completely thrombosed on follow-up angiography, and two DAVF demonstrated diminished flow after EACA therapy. Seven fistulae did not respond to EACA. Four of eight tightly coiled fistulae thrombosed, while none of five loosely coiled fistulae thrombosed. None of four cases with a residual fistula separate from the coil mass underwent thrombosis with EACA, while four of nine cases without a separate fistula thrombosed. There was no morbidity related to EACA therapy. EACA may thus be useful as an adjunct to endovascular treatment of cranial arteriovenous fistulae. Loose or incomplete coil packing of the fistula predicts a poor response to EACA therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Clinical Neurology
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine