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Materials and Methods
- Microsurgical anatomy of the posterior circulation

The authors studied 25 cadaveric brain specimens. The age of the cadavers ranged from 40 to 84 years with a mean of 58.96 years. The cadavers were embalmed with a mixture of 10% formaldehyde, 55% methanol, 15 g of sodium borate, 15 g of sodium citrate, 15% glycerine, 5% phenol, 15% water and 5 ml eosin to make 1 liter of arterial embalming fluid. About eight liters of this fluid was injected into the arterial system of each cadaver using a pump. The brain was subsequently delivered carefully in toto from the cadavers. Microsurgical dissection was carried out from the vertebral arteries to the basilar artery and its branches, the basilar artery bifurcation, posterior cerebral artery and its various branches. Microscopic dissection was done using the Serwell-Operating Microscope under 5x to 20x magnification. The arteries were painted with water color after dissection and digital photographs taken through the operating microscope. Particular attention was paid to the perforators in this area and the branches of the vertebrobasilar system. The posterior cerebral artery (PCA) was dissected up to the P3-P4 junction. Measurements of the outer diameters of the vertebral artery (VA), basilar artery (BA) and PCA were taken. Lengths of the BA and various divisions of the PCA were also noted. The PCA beyond the P3-P4 junction i.e., the cortical branches, was not dissected as the study was restricted to the cisternal anatomy. Meticulous dissection was done to distinguish the small perforators from the arachnoid strands under higher magnification. Documentation of the vascular anatomy and its variations was also done using a digital camera.

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