Direct endovascular thrombolytic therapy for dural sinus thrombosis

Neurosurgery. 1991 Jan;28(1):135-42. doi: 10.1097/00006123-199101000-00019.


Three patients, ages 51 to 71 years, sought treatment for symptomatic dural sinus thrombosis with occlusion and were treated by direct sinus perfusion with urokinase. All three patients had a dural arteriovenous fistula; one involved the inferior petrosal sinus and two involved the transverse sinus. Clinical findings included papilledema, diminished visual acuity, decreased mentation, and cranial nerve palsies. Diagnosis was made by cerebral arteriography and confirmed by sinus venography. All three patients were treated by a transjugular direct infusion of urokinase. In one patient, a transfemoral venous approach used initially was discontinued because of an infection. The period of continuous infusion for thrombolysis ranged between 4 and 10 days. In two patients, the clinical signs and symptoms improved with angiographic evidence of clot lysis and dural sinus recanalization. Angiography indicated that one patient had a partial resolution of a clot in the torcular herophili and transverse sinus but showed no clinical improvement. These preliminary results suggest that transjugular local infusion of thrombolytic agents can be an effective treatment for symptomatic, thrombosed dural sinuses. This selective lysis avoids thrombolytic effects that could aggravate or produce systemic hemorrhagic complications.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carotid Arteries / diagnostic imaging
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sinus Thrombosis, Intracranial / diagnostic imaging
  • Sinus Thrombosis, Intracranial / drug therapy*
  • Thrombolytic Therapy*
  • Urokinase-Type Plasminogen Activator / therapeutic use
  • Vertebral Artery / diagnostic imaging


  • Urokinase-Type Plasminogen Activator