It remains unclear as to whether dynamic and static cerebral autoregulation (CA) are impaired in acute ischaemic stroke, and whether these changes are related to stroke subtype. This could have important implications with regard to post-stroke prognosis and the management of blood pressure (BP) in the acute post-ictal period. Using transcranial Doppler ultrasonography and non-invasive manipulation of BP, we compared both mechanisms in 61 patients with ischaemic stroke within 96 h of ictus, and 54 age- and sex-matched controls. There was no difference in static and dynamic CA indices between the various stroke subtypes. Combining all stroke subtypes dynamic autoregulation, as measured using thigh cuff release, was significantly impaired in both the affected and non-affected stroke hemispheres compared to controls (mean autoregulation index 4.1 +/- 3.3, 4.8 +/- 3.1 and 6.2 +/- 2.3, respectively, p < 0.05). By comparison static autoregulation, assessed using isometric hand grip and thigh cuff inflation, was not significantly different. In conclusion, dynamic but not static CA appears to be globally impaired in acute ischaemic stroke. This deserves further study and may identify possibilities for therapeutic intervention.
Copyright 2000 S. Karger AG, Basel.