Long-term outcome after cerebral venous thrombosis: analysis of functional and vocational outcome, residual symptoms, and adverse events in 161 patients

J Neurol. 2016 Mar;263(3):477-84. doi: 10.1007/s00415-015-7996-9. Epub 2016 Jan 2.


Cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) affects mainly working-aged individuals. Functional recovery after CVT is generally considered good with about 3/4 of patients achieving short-term independence. However, vascular events, long-term functional outcome, and employment after CVT remain poorly investigated. We identified consecutive adult CVT patients treated at the Helsinki University Hospital (1987-2013) and invited them to a follow-up visit. Each clinical examination was combined with interview. We also recorded recurrent venous thromboembolism (VTE) and hemorrhagic events during follow-up and antithrombotic medication use. A modified Rankin Scale (mRS) served to assess functional outcome. Logistic regression served to identify independent factors associated with unemployment and functional recovery. Of the 195 patients identified, 21 died, 9 declined to participate, and 4 were excluded from the study. Thus, 161 patients (106 women) underwent an examination after a median of 39 months (interquartile range 14-95). VTE (one of which was CVT) occurred in 9 (6%) patients, and severe hemorrhagic events in 10 (6%). Functional outcome was good, with 84% scoring 0-1 on the mRS; 42% reported residual symptoms. Altogether, 91 (57%) patients were employed. After adjusting for age and sex, a National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score>2 at admission and low education level, associated with both unfavorable functional outcome and unemployment. Long-term functional outcome after CVT may appear good if measured with mRS, but patients often have residual symptoms and are frequently unable to return to their previous work.

Keywords: Anticoagulation; Cerebral venous thrombosis; Follow-up; Long-term outcome; Sinus thrombosis; Vocational status.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Employment*
  • Female
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / pharmacology
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Hemorrhage / chemically induced
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Thrombosis* / drug therapy
  • Intracranial Thrombosis* / physiopathology
  • Intracranial Thrombosis* / psychology
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Recovery of Function / drug effects
  • Recovery of Function / physiology*
  • Recurrence
  • Treatment Outcome*
  • Venous Thrombosis* / drug therapy
  • Venous Thrombosis* / physiopathology
  • Venous Thrombosis* / psychology


  • Fibrinolytic Agents