Section 49
Chapter 48,580

Combined carotid and transcranial ultrasound findings compared with clinical classification and stroke severity in acute ischemic stroke

Thomassen, L.; Waje-Andreassen, U.; Naess, H.; Aarseth, J.; Russell, D.

Cerebrovascular Diseases 21(1-2): 86-90


ISSN/ISBN: 1015-9770
PMID: 16330869
DOI: 10.1159/000090008
Accession: 048579588

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The aim of this study was to assess the association between cerebral hemodynamics and the clinical picture as defined by the Oxfordshire Community Stroke Project (OCSP) classification, as well as the clinical severity as defined by the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) within the first 6 h of an acute middle cerebral artery (MCA) stroke onset. 70 unselected patients were grouped according to the OCSP classification and NIHSS. All patients immediately had extracranial and transcranial Doppler (TCD) ultrasound examinations. In the study population as a whole, there was a significant association between intracranial vascular pathology and the OCSP classification (p<0.001) as well as the NIHSS score (p<0.001). In patients with severe stroke, however, TCD demonstrated the hypothesized proximal MCA(1) occlusion in only 34% of patients with an OCSP-defined total anterior circulation syndrome and in 42% of patients with an NIHSS score of >or=15. In moderate stroke, the OCSP classification was misleading in almost half of the patients with a partial anterior circulation syndrome, i.e. a hypothesized distal MCA(2) occlusion suitable for thrombolysis. Neither the OCSP classification nor the NIHSS grading provided reliable information about the site or presence of intracranial arterial occlusion in acute stroke within the first 6 h after stroke onset in the individual patient. The results of this study strongly suggest that selection of acute ischemic stroke patients for thrombolysis should also include an assessment of cerebral hemodynamics.

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