Imaging patterns of cerebral ischemia in hypereosinophilic syndrome: case report and systematic review

Neurol Sci. 2022 Aug;43(8):5091-5094. doi: 10.1007/s10072-022-06134-4. Epub 2022 May 19.


Introduction: Ischemic stroke is a potential complication of hypereosinophilic syndromes (HES), and little is known about underlying pathophysiological mechanisms. We aimed to describe the imaging patterns of cerebral ischemia in patients with HES.

Methods: An individual case is reported. A systematic PubMed review of all records reporting adult patients with HES who suffered ischemic stroke and for whom neuroimaging details of ischemic lesions were available was performed.

Results: A 60-year-old man presented with progressive subacute gait difficulty and psychomotor slowing as well as an absolute eosinophilia (2.2 × 109/L) at admission. Brain magnetic resonance tomography revealed multiple acute and subacute internal and external border zone infarcts. Cardiac diagnostic suggested the presence of endomyocarditis. After extensive diagnostic workup, idiopathic HES was diagnosed. The systematic review yielded 183 studies, of which 40 fulfilled the inclusion criteria: a total of 64 patients (31.3% female), with mean age 51.1 years and a median absolute eosinophile count at diagnosis of 10.2 × 109/L were included in the analyses. A border zone pattern of cerebral ischemic lesions was reported in 41 patients (64.1%). Isolated peripheral infarcts were reported in 7 patients (10.9%). Sixteen patients had multiple acute infarcts with no border zone distribution (25.0%). An intracardiac thrombus was reported in 15/60 patients (25%), and findings suggestive of endomyocarditis or endomyocardial fibrosis were found in 31/60 patients (51.7%).

Conclusions: Border zone distribution of cerebral ischemia without hemodynamic compromise is the most frequent imaging pattern in patients with HES, occurring in 2/3 of patients who develop ischemic stroke.

Keywords: Eosinophilia; Hypereosinophilic syndrome; Magnetic resonance imaging; Stroke.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain Ischemia* / complications
  • Brain Ischemia* / etiology
  • Cerebral Infarction / complications
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypereosinophilic Syndrome* / complications
  • Hypereosinophilic Syndrome* / diagnostic imaging
  • Ischemic Stroke*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / adverse effects
  • Male
  • Middle Aged