Background and purpose: Pulsatile tinnitus is a common symptom of intracranial dural arteriovenous fistulas (DAVF). This study aims to characterize the clinical and ultrasonographic features of DAVF in patients with pulsatile tinnitus.
Methods: We compared the characteristics of DAVF and carotid duplex sonography (CDS) results between 67 DAVF patients with and without pulsatile tinnitus. We also investigated the relationship between changes in tinnitus status and serial CDS changes in 25 DAVF patients with pulsatile tinnitus.
Results: Pulsatile tinnitus was highly associated with the location and feeding arteries of DAVF (P < .001). The sensitivity of resistive index (RI; Norm, >.72) and end diastolic velocity (EDV; Norm, <21 cm/sec) of external carotid artery (ECA) in CDS study for diagnosing DAVF in patients with pulsatile tinnitus was 95% and 92%, respectively. Changes of RI and EDV of ECA also correlated with the changes of tinnitus status.
Conclusions: RI and EDV of ECA have high diagnostic sensitivity and reliability for detecting DAVF in patients with pulsatile tinnitus.
Copyright © 2009 by the American Society of Neuroimaging.