Background: Cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) is associated with intracranial hemorrhage.
Aim: To identify clinical and imaging features of CVT-associated intracranial hemorrhage. We hypothesized that higher clot burden would be associated with a higher risk of intracranial hemorrhage.
Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of an international, multicenter cohort of patients with confirmed cerebral venous thrombosis who underwent computed tomography within 2 weeks of symptom onset. Clinical and imaging features were compared between patients with and without intracranial hemorrhage. Clot burden was assessed by counting the number of thrombosed venous sinuses and veins on confirmatory imaging.
Results: We enrolled 260 patients from 10 institutions in Europe and Mexico. The mean age was 42 years and 74% were female. Intracranial hemorrhage was found in 102 (39%). Among them parenchymal hemorrhage occurred in 64 (63%), in addition, small juxta-cortical hemorrhage was found in 30 (29%), subarachnoid hemorrhage in 24 (24%) and subdural hemorrhage in 11 (11%). Multiple concomitant types of hemorrhage occurred in 23 (23%). Older age and superior sagittal thrombosis involvement were associated with presence of hemorrhage. The number of thrombosed venous sinuses was not associated with intracranial hemorrhage (median number IQRInterquartile ratio] of sinuses/veins involved with hemorrhage 2 (1-3) vs. 2 (1-3) without hemorrhage, p = 0.4).
Conclusion: The high rate of intracranial hemorrhage in cerebral venous thrombosis is not explained by widespread involvement of the venous sinuses. Superior sagittal sinus involvement is associated with higher bleeding risk.
Keywords: Bleeding.; Cerebral venous thrombosis; Hemorrhage; Stroke.