Vertebral artery dissection complicated by basilar artery occlusion successfully treated with intra-arterial thrombolysis: three case reports

Neurol Sci. 2008 Feb;29(1):51-5. doi: 10.1007/s10072-008-0861-1. Epub 2008 Apr 1.


Cervical artery dissection is an important cause of stroke in young patients and accounts of 10%-20% of stroke or TIA in patients aged less than 50 years. Basilar artery occlusion (BAO) is an infrequent cause of acute stroke, which invariably leads to death or long-term disability if not recanalized. We describe three patients with BAO caused by vertebral dissection, successfully treated with intra-arterial thrombolysis. The lysis of the occluding embolus was obtained by injection of the thrombolytic drug directly or near the thrombus without haemorrhagic complications. Our cases confirm the safety and efficacy of intra-arterial thrombolysis in patients with BAO due to a vertebral artery dissection.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Basilar Artery / pathology*
  • Brain Ischemia / etiology
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Cerebral Infarction / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intra-Arterial
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Thromboembolism / complications
  • Thromboembolism / drug therapy*
  • Thrombolytic Therapy*
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator / administration & dosage*
  • Vertebral Artery Dissection / complications*
  • Vertebral Artery Dissection / drug therapy*


  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator