Subarachnoid Hemorrhage

Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage

Aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH), caused by a ruptured aneurysm (bleeding into the space surrounding the brain), is a serious, life-threatening event effecting 30,000 patients per year in the US. Initial treatment focuses on stopping the bleeding, restoring normal blood flow, and relieving the pressure on the brain. Patients are then typically closely observed in the hospital for 14 days to monitor for post-securement complications, hydrocephalus and for the body to reabsorb any remaining blood from the subarachnoid space (SAS). Approximately 30% of the SAH patients after aneurysm securement will develop post-securement complications, and morbidity and mortality due to these complications remains constant at 14-36%, with delayed ischemic neurological deficit reported to be as high as 50% in patients with these complications. There remains a significant unmet need to improve outcomes for these patients via early removal of blood products (e.g. hemoglobin, oxyhemoglobin, and downstream inflammatory proteins) from the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Early removal has been shown to reduce the incidence of vasospasm, stroke, hydrocephalus and shunting, and result in a shorter hospital course. The Neurapheresis therapy is designed to quickly remove blood and blood products from the CSF post-securement and reduce the incidence of post-securement complications and their resulting mortality/morbidity.
Minnetronix Medical recently completed the PILLAR Feasibility Trial for the use of the Neurapheresis therapy in SAH patients. The FDA has since given approval for the PILLAR XT study, a 30-patient extension further investigating the use of the Neurapheresis platform with SAH patients.
PILLAR XT Significant Risk IDE #
Scientific Advisory Board
  • J. Javier Provencio, MD (Louise Nerancy Associate Professor in Neurology; Director, Nerancy Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit; Associate Professor, Center for Brain Immunology and Glia, Neuroscience, University of Virginia)
  • Michael Diringer, MD (Professor of Neurology; Head, Neurological Critical Care Section (Adult Neurology), Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis)
  • Michael Levitt, MD (Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery and Radiology, UW Medicine)
Key Collaborators
Bryn Martin, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biological Engineering
University of Idaho

Bryn Martin is an assistant professor of Biological Engineering at the University of Idaho and leads research within the Neurophysiological Imaging and Modeling Laboratory ( Martin conducts clinical translational research that aims to improve human health and well-being for the millions of people affected by central nervous system (CNS) disorders. His research develops and applies advanced MR imaging and computational modeling techniques to investigate the pathophysiology of CNS disorders and therapeutics from a hydrodynamic and biomechanical perspective and develop related medical technologies. Prior to joining U of I, Martin served as director of the Conquer Chiari Research Center at the University of Akron (2012-15), completed post-doctoral training at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (2009-12) and earned a doctorate in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Illinois at Chicago (2008). Martin has been employed in a number of medical device companies and is an active medtech inventor and consultant. He serves on a number of international research committees in the field of cerebrospinal fluid dynamics and CNS diseases.

Spiros Blackburn
Associate Professor
University of Texas Houston

Dr. Spiros Blackburn is an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Texas Houston Health Science Center. Dr. Blackburn has dual fellowship training in open and endovascular neurosurgery, is board certified in Neurological Surgery, and is CAST certified in Endovascular Neurological Surgery. He has an active clinical practice treating cerebrovascular disease and skull base tumors. His expertise in cerebrovascular disease encompasses management of brain aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations, Moyamoya disease, vascular stenosis, and stroke. As a skull base surgeon, Dr. Blackburn treats all brain tumors and has a large clinical practice for the treatment of pituitary tumors using endoscopic approaches.

Dr. Blackburn has an active research laboratory investigating the effects of aneurysmal rupture on cerebral blood flow, coagulation, and inflammation. He currently has NIH funding investigating the correlation of inflammation and coagulation on the clinical outcome of patients after subarachnoid hemorrhage.

Christa Swisher
Medical Director, Neuroscience Clinical Research Organization and Assistant Professor of Neurology
Duke University

Dr. Christa Swisher, MD, FACNS is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at Duke University Medical Center. She is a neurointensivist and critical care neurophysiologist. She is the Neurocritical Care Fellowship Program Director and is the Medical Director of the Duke Neurology Clinical Research Organization. Dr. Swisher conducts clinical and translational research in neurologically critically ill patients. Her specific research interests include identification and treatment of seizures and status epilepticus that occur in patients in the ICU with a variety of acute brain injuries, such as SAH, ischemic stroke, ICH, TBI, etc. Additionally, her research efforts aim to enhance the use of ICU quantitative EEG for seizure and ischemia detection. She received her MD from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. She completed her neurology residency, neurocritical care fellowship and clinical neurophysiology fellowship from Duke University Medical Center.

Andrew Grande
Assistant Professor, Department of Neurosurgery and Co-director, Earl Grande Stroke and Stem Cell Laboratory
University of Minnesota

Andrew Grande, MD, is a neurosurgeon who is always looking to advance the profession through new technology and treatment options. A native Minnesotan, Grande enjoys caring for Minnesotans and feels a great sense of community and affinity to the University of Minnesota. His clinical interests are in the treatment of cerebral vascular diseases using either open vascular or endovascular techniques. He has specific interests in the treatment of complex aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) and Moyamoya disease. Dr. Grande also treats trigeminal neuralgia and regularly collaborates with other departments to determine the best treatment options for his patients. Dr. Grande also co-directs the Earl Grande Stroke and Stem Cell Laboratory at the University of Minnesota.