Objective: To investigate whether cortical superficial siderosis (cSS) on MRI, especially if disseminated (involving more than 3 sulci), increases the risk of future symptomatic lobar intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) in cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA).
Methods: European multicenter cohort study of 118 patients with CAA (104 with baseline symptomatic lobar ICH) diagnosed according to the Boston criteria. We obtained baseline clinical, MRI, and follow-up data on symptomatic lobar ICH. Using Kaplan-Meier and Cox regression analyses, we investigated cSS and ICH risk, adjusting for known confounders.
Results: During a median follow-up time of 24 months (interquartile range 9-44 months), 23 of 118 patients (19.5%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 12.8%-27.8%) experienced symptomatic lobar ICH. Any cSS and disseminated cSS were predictors of time until first or recurrent ICH (log-rank test: p = 0.0045 and p = 0.0009, respectively). ICH risk at 4 years was 25% (95% CI: 7.6%-28.3%) for patients without siderosis; 28.9% (95% CI: 7.7%-76.7%) for patients with focal siderosis; and 74% (95% CI: 44.1%-95.7%) for patients with disseminated cSS (log-rank test: p = 0.0031). In Cox regression models, any cSS and disseminated cSS were both independently associated with increased lobar ICH risk, after adjusting for ≥ 2 microbleeds and age (hazard ratio: 2.53; 95% CI: 1.05-6.15; p = 0.040 and hazard ratio: 3.16; 95% CI: 1.35-7.43; p = 0.008, respectively). These results remained consistent in sensitivity analyses including only patients with symptomatic lobar ICH at baseline.
Conclusions: Our findings indicate that cSS, particularly if disseminated, is associated with an increased risk of symptomatic lobar ICH in CAA. cSS may help stratify future bleeding risk in CAA, with implications for prognosis and treatment.