5% risk during coil surgery

Hi Friends,

My understanding is that there is a risk of 1% for the cerebral angiogram and a 5% risk for the actual coiling procedure. Is that risk as high for everyone?

Currently, I have a 4mm annie in my cerebral artery that grew from a 2mm annie in 9 years. I am deciding what to do. My choices are a) continue to monitor or b) coil. I am in good health, am 49... My concern is that currently an aneurysm that small has a 1% risk of rupture. Why would I undergo surgery that has a 5% risk???

Feeling confused.



I wish I understood how the risk factor works but I really don't. I know when after we had the appointment with my neurosurgeon we were told that there was a 2% risk that mine would rupture in the next 6 months. Our youngest son was getting married in 2 months. I wanted to have the surgery done before the wedding so that I wouldn't worry about it before the wedding and I could enjoy the wedding. My surgeon agreed and we did the surgery 5 weeks before the wedding. After the surgery Dr. Sanchez told my husband that we avoided a catastrophic failure by having the surgery that day, that there was another aneurysm coming off of the back of my aneurysm that was about to rupture. I also had a hemorrhage during the surgery. Sunrise I would have been one of the 2% and probably would not have survived. I know it is a hard decision and it is one that really only you can make.

Thanks Carol...

I know, you're right... and I'm too analytical!

I'm glad you are doing well and were able to comfortable enjoy your son's wedding!!!!!

I am very analytical, too, Sunrise. I have another aneurysm that has formed in the last 5 months. It is 2mm and am in the wait and watch phase.

I pray that your decision be made clear so that you are comfortable with what you need to do for your family.


Hi - just like Carol I honestly don't understand the whole risk factor percentages. Everyone is different, with different contributing factors so who can say for sure. My aneurysm ruptured so I had no choice in my treatment. I just know that having it rupture was horrible. It has been 15 months and I still struggle daily with something left over from it rupturing. Obviously only you can make the choice and I know it's a hard one - prayers sent that you come to a decision and are at peace with it...Mary

The Neurosurgeons threw at me a lot of precentages and I have to say I thought I was a "probability and stats" person...but at that moment I asked what was the bottom line...they told me "no choice, it must be coiled"...

Sending some good vibes that you can make the best decision for YOU...~ Colleen

Good question and I understand your dilemma....I think when it comes to percentages its all good , that is until they were talking about MY brain---then it was all about " OMG Just fix me, damnit!!" --percentages flew out the window--so I don't know, everyone is so different and its a tough call to make....yet i've heard of so many others who were divided between the watch/wait and surgical intervention only to find out that thank God they'd decided to go ahead with treatment as there were unforeseen issues --daughter domes and the like--that had formed unbeknownst to all....cut and dry, none of this is ! and none of this is easy. My best to you, Janet


I could send a zillion questions/comments of the stat percentages on all aspects of coiling...

Did your neurodoc mean at the existing 4mm size...or if left for a larger size?

Did the doc provide his / his team's stats or the national average?

Did you discuss the continued monitoring...i.e. the volume of radiation and the contrast dye (agent, material, medium)...?

Did you discuss if the aneurysm grows larger, if the percentages will grow...i.e. % based on 4mm ...to what size?

My internal carotid artery aneurysm ruptured at 6mm...a member in Germany had 4mm MCA aneurysm that ruptured... If an aneurysm enlarges...usually the potential for leak/rupture grows...So, would a larger size make the surgery percentage rise, too?

But depending on where your aneurysm is located...may also add to your questions...

What did the neurodoc suggest?

Prayers that you get your right comfortable, best possible, decision...


It's all very scary but you do NOT want a rupture. Had coils and stents. Not that bad. Just get right doc.

Hi Sunrise,

It is a very hard decision. I have a 6mm annie behind my left eye. After the many "what if" questions that came along with this process, I finally decided to schedule my coiling surgery. In my opinion (and after a lot of great insight from people in this group) I realized that finding an aneurysm before it ruptures is actually a blessing in itself. The risk of rupture may be very low, but the consequence could be fatal. I live by the quote "prevention is better than any treatment". I know many who had successful coiling and they now have a peace of mind..no pun intended. I know what a tough decision it is and at the end of the day you have to do what's best for you and how you FEEL. Weigh all the pros and cons. Best wishes! -Jen

Hi Sunrise,

The unknown is the rate of growth of the aneurysm especially if there was only one sampling period. I'm in the camp of eliminating rupture risk period. The devastating outcome from a rupture is not somewhere you want to go as life will change in a way you never imagined. Hope this helps put it in perspective.


Mine ruptured at 3x5 MM so I had no choice. There are a lot folks here who have had similar sized aneurysms that rupture. Pick up a metric ruler and see just how small 3 or 4 MM really is. The question to ask the doctor is, "what is the percentage of people who have good outcomes after a rupture vs the people who have good outcomes after coiling an un-ruptured aneurysm"? Then ask yourself what group you would rather be in. In the case of aneurysms, an once of preventions is worth a truckload cure.

I am now faced with a residual aneurysm 2x4 MM and it is currently not treatable. If it were, I would have do it in a heartbeat. I would never want to go through a rupture again.

But as others have said every person is different, and there are real risks for this procedure. Only you can decide what is best for you after you have all the facts. Best of luck to you.