Cerebral aneurysm rupture can lead to devastating neurological complications and present a complex problem to treat. We report a unique case of a ruptured posterior communicating artery (PCoA) aneurysm presenting with sudden and complete vision loss.
A 39-year-old man presented with the acute onset of severe headache and complete bilateral vision loss. The patient described headaches for several months prior to presentation. However, prior to the day of presentation, he had no visual disturbance. A CT angiogram (CTA) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain revealed a 1.6-cm, non-contrast enhancing suprasellar mass, eccentric to the left side, consistent with hemorrhagic mass. There was no obvious aneurysm or vascular malformation. The sella tursica was normal in appearance. The patient was taken for an immediate endoscopic endonasal transtuberculum approach for optic nerve decompression. Hematoma without an associated tumor was encountered and partially evacuated before aborting with resultant partial improvement in vision. A subsequent cerebral angiogram revealed an irregularly shaped, postero-laterally pointing, 2.5-mm left PCoA aneurysm. The patient was then taken for open clipping of the ruptured aneurysm. A large, fibrinous capsule was found over the superolateral aspect of the aneurysm. The ruptured aneurysm was secured with clips and the surrounding hematoma was evacuated.
In the immediate postoperative period, the patient regained vision in the nasal field of his right eye. This case illustrates a unique presentation of a ruptured PCoA aneurysm, and thus must be considered in the differential diagnosis of a suprasellar hemorrhage resulting in visual loss in absence of a recognizable associated tumor.
Keywords: Apoplexy, posterior communicating artery aneurysm, ruptured cerebral aneurysm