Occlusion of the intradural vertebrobasilar artery

Neuroradiology. 1978 Feb 17;14(5):219-29. doi: 10.1007/BF00418619.


The diagnosis of occlusion of the intradural vertebrobasilar artery (OIDVBA) was made by means of cerebral angiography in 22 patients. The clinical presentation, course and followup were studied in conjunction with the angiographic findings in each case and the following conclusions made. OIDVBA is not rare. It occurs one-fourth as often as occlusion of the carotid artery. The correct diagnosis is not made clinically before angiography in the majority of patients. Complete visualization of the neck and intracranial vasculature is necessary to document the occlusion. Atherosclerotic thrombosis is the most common type of occlusive lesion. The most common predisposing factors are atherosclerosis, hypertensive cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus, and developmental vertebrobasilar hypoplasia. Most patients with occlusion are in the 7th and 8th decades of life and transient attacks of vertebrobasilar ischemia precede the occlusion in one-half of the cases. Emboli usually lodge in the terminal portion of the basilar artery whereas thrombotic occlusions tend not to be located in a characteristic segment. A majority of patients diagnosed angiographically survive their OIDVBA, but most distal occlusions result in death, often following several weeks of coma. In the surviving majority, disturbance of gait, impairment of vision, and symptoms of transient vertebrobasilar ischemia are the most common sequelae.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Basilar Artery / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Dura Mater / blood supply*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Embolism and Thrombosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Vertebral Artery / diagnostic imaging*