2012 Barnes-Jewish Hospital Report to the Community

Danny Strobbe

Danny Strobbe
Danny Strobbe, Ferguson, Missouri

iMRI technology gives brain hemorrhage survivor a bright future

"I was taking college algebra and some other classes, just going along in my daily life," says Danny Strobbe, 22, of his memories of the fall of 2010. "Everything was great. And then the next thing you know, I'm in the hospital, and everything changed."

An excruciating headache brought Danny to Barnes-Jewish Hospital, where tests revealed his brain had hemorrhaged. In January 2011, Michael Chicoine, MD, Washington University neurosurgeon at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, performed a craniotomy to stop the bleeding, and a second surgery to relieve pressure. "Because the vascular irregularity that caused Danny's hemorrhage was located in deep and critical areas of the brain, we didn't make an aggressive attempt to remove it at first," says Chicoine. "Complete removal could have caused paralysis, coma or even death."

A second hemorrhage in September 2011 pushed Danny's doctors to use a new technology, intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging, or iMRI, to try to remove as much of the malformation in Danny's brain as possible. The iMRI, the most advanced technology available, gave the surgical team a view of their progress in real time in the operating room. "Using this technology in the third surgery allowed for nearly complete and safe removal of the abnormality, allowing Danny to avoid the serious consequences these malformations can cause," says Chicoine.

"I'm planning to celebrate the anniversary of my surgery with iMRI in September. I'm thankful for Dr. Chicoine and the iMRI. I'm taking it easy and enjoying life, looking forward to what's ahead."

Danny Strobbe
Surgeons used the real-time image of Danny's brain to monitor their progress in removing the vascular irregularity that caused his brain to hemorrhage.