Location of the clot and outcome of perfusion defects in acute anterior circulation stroke treated with intravenous thrombolysis

AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2013 Jan;34(1):100-6. doi: 10.3174/ajnr.A3149. Epub 2012 Jun 21.


Background and purpose: The location of the clot is a major determinant of ischemic stroke outcome. We studied the impact of the location (ICA, proximal M1 segment of the MCA, distal M1 segment, and M2 segment and more distally) of the clot on the CT perfusion parametric maps, the mismatch ratio, the amount of salvaged brain tissue, and the imaging and clinical outcomes in a retrospective acute (<3 hours) stroke cohort treated with intravenous thrombolysis.

Materials and methods: We reviewed 105 patients who underwent admission multimodal CT that revealed an occluded vessel on CTA. CT perfusion was successfully performed in 58 patients (55%). Differences among the parameters in different vessel positions were studied with the ANCOVA by using onset-to-imaging time as a covariate followed by pair-wise testing.

Results: There were no significant differences in potential confounding variables among the groups. A clot proximal to the M2 segment produced a significantly larger defect on the MTT map. A clot in the ICA resulted in a significantly larger CBV lesion compared with the distal M1 segment, the M2 segment, and the M3 segment. In general, a more proximal thrombus created a larger CBV defect. The fraction of penumbra that was salvaged at 24 hours was higher in the more distal vessel positions.

Conclusions: Admission CBV defects are larger in proximal vessel occlusions. More of the penumbra can be salvaged if the occlusion is located distally. This effect seems to reach a plateau in the distal M1 segment of the MCA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blood Coagulation
  • Cerebral Angiography / methods
  • Female
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intravenous
  • Intracranial Thrombosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Intracranial Thrombosis / etiology
  • Intracranial Thrombosis / prevention & control*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Stroke / complications
  • Stroke / diagnostic imaging*
  • Stroke / therapy*
  • Thrombolytic Therapy / methods*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Fibrinolytic Agents