Cilostazol versus aspirin therapy in patients with chronic dizziness after ischemic stroke

Clin Neurol Neurosurg. 2012 Sep;114(7):876-80. doi: 10.1016/j.clineuro.2012.01.029. Epub 2012 Feb 13.


Background: Chronic dizziness is frequently reported by patients in the chronic stage after ischemic stroke. The aim of this study was to determine the efficacy of cilostazol versus that of aspirin for the chronic dizziness that follows ischemic stroke.

Methods: We performed a prospective, randomized, open-label, blinded endpoint trial. One hundred six patients who suffered supratentorial ischemic stroke within the previous 1-6 months and subsequently complained of persistent dizziness without other obvious sequelae were enrolled. Patients were randomly given cilostazol (200mg/day) or aspirin (100mg/day) for 6 months. Rates of improvement in the dizziness were then evaluated. Changes in fixation suppression of the vestibulo-ocular reflex (an indicator of cerebral control over the brainstem reflex related to balance), regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) in the cerebrum, cerebellum, and brainstem; and the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (SDS) were also evaluated.

Results: Dizziness was significantly improved in the cilostazol group versus the aspirin group (P<0.0001) after the 6-month therapy. The capacity for fixation suppression of the vestibulo-ocular reflex was improved (P<0.0001), and regional CBF in the cerebrum (relative to that in the brainstem [P=0.003] and to that in the cerebello-brainstem [P=0.012]) was increased only in the cilostazol group. There was no statistical difference in the change in SDS scores between the two groups.

Conclusion: Cilostazol improves the chronic dizziness that follows ischemic stroke and increases supratentorial CBF and cerebral function for adaptation of the brainstem reflex related to the sense of balance.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aspirin / therapeutic use*
  • Brain Ischemia / complications*
  • Brain Ischemia / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Stem / blood supply
  • Cerebellum / blood supply
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation
  • Cilostazol
  • Depression / epidemiology
  • Depression / etiology
  • Dizziness / diagnostic imaging
  • Dizziness / drug therapy*
  • Dizziness / etiology*
  • Endpoint Determination
  • Female
  • Fixation, Ocular
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reflex, Vestibulo-Ocular
  • Stroke / complications*
  • Stroke / diagnostic imaging
  • Tetrazoles / therapeutic use*
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon


  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors
  • Tetrazoles
  • Cilostazol
  • Aspirin