Intracarotid hydroxyethyl methacrylate solution causing stroke in dogs

P. Purdy, C. L. White, H. Batjer, K. Brewer, K. Hodges, D. Samson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) has been advocated as a polymerizing solution with which to prevent deflation of detachable balloons in interventional neuroradiology. It is pertinent to know if unpolymerized HEMA would have untoward effects if accidentally released into the carotid artery by balloon rupture or deflation. Seven mongrel dogs underwent transfemoral catheterization of the common carotid artery and subsequent injection of HEMA solution in volumes of 1 cc in five dogs, 2 cc in one, and 4 cc in one. Angiography performed at the time of injection revealed evidence of intravascular thrombosis as well as possible spasm. Three surviving animals were sacrificed at 48 hours; the brains were fixed and examined histopathologically. One brain was normal and one was autolyzed and could not be examined. Five of the seven animals had histopathologically documented cerebral infarctions of varying size. No foreign substance was seen within the blood vessels to suggest intravascular polymerization. The animals injected with 2 or 4 cc HEMA solution did not survive 48 hours. Literature review reveals little documentation of the toxicology of intravascular HEMA. With its increasing popularity as a compound for polymerization in detachable balloons introduced into the brain, further investigations are warranted to understand the physical properties of the compound and potential risks of its use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)756-759
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1990


  • balloon embolization
  • dog
  • hydroxyethyl methacrylate
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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