Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 35-41

Multidetector computed tomography angiography: Application in vertebral artery dissection


1 Department of Neuroradiology, Institute of Neurological Sciences, Southern General Hospital, 1345 Govan Road, Glasgow G51 4TF, United Kingdom
2 Department of Neurology, Institute of Neurological Sciences, Southern General Hospital, 1345 Govan Road, Glasgow G51 4TF, United Kingdom

Correspondence Address:
Evelyn Teasdale
Department of Neuroradiology, Institute of Neurological Sciences, Southern General Hospital, 1345 Govan Road, Glasgow G51 4TF
United Kingdom
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-2327.78048

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Background and Purpose: Multidetector computed tomography angiography (MDCTA) is a minimally invasive radiological technique providing high-resolution images of the arterial wall and angiographic images of the lumen. We studied the radiological features of vertebral artery dissection (VAD) in a consecutive series of patients investigated for acute stroke and subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) in order to confirm and define the diagnostic features of VAD on MDCTA. Patients and Methods: Review of patients identified prospectively over a 4-year period with VAD assessed by MDCTA was conducted. Radiological features of VAD on MDCTA were reanalyzed utilising previously reported criteria for VAD. Results: Thirty-five patients (25 males, mean age 49.6 years) with a total of 45 dissected vertebral arteries were reviewed. MDCTA features of VAD included increased wall thickness in 44/45 (97.7%) arteries and increased total vessel diameter in 42/45 arteries (93.3%). All dissected arteries had either lumen stenosis (21/45) or associated segmental occlusion (24/45). An intimal flap was detected in 6/45 (13.3 %) vessels. Twenty-five patients had follow-up imaging, 14/32 vessels returned to normal, 4 showed improvement in stenosis but did not return to normal and 14 demonstrated no change. The majority of non-occluded vessels became normal or displayed improved patency. Only 4/17 occluded arteries demonstrated re-establishment of flow. No adverse effects were recorded. Conclusions: MDCTA is a safe and reliable technique for the diagnosis of VAD. Increased wall thickness (97.7%) and increased vessel wall diameter (93.3%) were the most frequently observed features.


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