Arterial variations around the atlas: a comprehensive review for avoiding neurosurgical complications

Ivashchuk G, Fries FN, Loukas M, Paulson D, Monteith SJ, Chapman JR, Oskouian RJ, Tubbs RS.Arterial variations around the atlas: a comprehensive review for avoiding neurosurgical complications.Childs Nerv Syst. 2016 Jun;32(6):1093-100. doi: 10.1007/s00381-016-3066-6. 

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION:

Neurosurgical approaches often involve the atlas. Therefore, the arterial relationships and anatomical variations are of paramount importance to the neurosurgeon.

METHODS:

Using standard search engines, a literature review of arterial variants near the first cervical vertebra was performed.

CONCLUSIONS:

Arterial variations around the atlas are surgically significant. Awareness of their existence and course may provide better pre-operative planning and surgical intervention, potentially leading to better clinical outcomes. Three-dimensional computed tomography angiography (3D CTA) is an important tool for identifying and diagnosing such abnormalities and should be used when such vascular anomalies are suspected.