Determining factors of better leptomeningeal collaterals: a study of 857 consecutive acute ischemic stroke patients

J Neurol. 2019 Mar;266(3):582-588. doi: 10.1007/s00415-018-09170-3. Epub 2019 Jan 4.


Background: In acute ischemic stroke (AIS) collaterals correlate with infarct size, recanalization rate and clinical outcome. We aimed to identify factors associated with better collateral status in a large series of AIS patients with middle cerebral artery (MCA) occlusion.

Methods: In the Acute STroke Registry and Analysis of Lausanne (ASTRAL) from 2003 to 2016, we identified all consecutive AIS with proximal MCA occlusion on CT-angiography performed < 24 h. Collaterals were scored from 0 (absent) to 3 (≥ 100%) and related to multiple demographic, clinical, metabolic and radiological variables in a multivariate regression analysis (MVA).

Results: The 857 included patients had a median age of 72.3 years, 48.4% were female and median admission NIHSS was 16. Better collaterals were associated with younger age (OR 0.99; 95% CI 0.98-1.00), hemineglect (OR 1.35; 95% CI 1.03-1.76), absence of visual field defects (OR 0.64; 95% CI 0.46-0.90), eye deviation (OR 0.58; 95% CI 0.43-0.79) and decreased vigilance (OR 0.62; 95% CI 0.44-0.88). Better collaterals were also associated with dyslipidemia (OR 1.57; 95% CI 1.16-2.13), no previous statin use (OR 0.69; 95% CI 0.50-0.95), and lower creatinine levels (OR 0.99; 95% CI 0.99-1.00). On neuroimaging, better collaterals related to higher ASPECTS score (OR 1.27; 95% CI 1.20-1.35) and higher clot burden score (OR 1.09; 95% CI 1.03-1.14).

Conclusions: Younger age, dyslipidemia and lower creatinine levels were predictors of better collaterals in AIS patients from proximal MCA occlusions. Greater degree of collaterals related to lower stroke severity on admission. On neuroimaging, better collaterals were independently associated with minor early ischemic changes and lower clot burden. These data may add knowledge on pathophysiology of collaterals development and may help to identify patients with better collaterals for late or aggressive recanalization treatments.

Keywords: Acute ischemic stroke; Acute neuroimaging; Collateral circulation; Computed tomography-angiography (CTA).

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Brain Ischemia* / blood
  • Brain Ischemia* / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Ischemia* / epidemiology
  • Brain Ischemia* / physiopathology
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation / physiology*
  • Collateral Circulation / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infarction, Middle Cerebral Artery / blood
  • Infarction, Middle Cerebral Artery / diagnostic imaging
  • Infarction, Middle Cerebral Artery / epidemiology
  • Infarction, Middle Cerebral Artery / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Meninges / blood supply
  • Middle Aged
  • Registries*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Stroke* / blood
  • Stroke* / diagnostic imaging
  • Stroke* / epidemiology
  • Stroke* / physiopathology