Significance of Raised Flow Velocity in Basilar Artery in Patients with Acute Ischemic Stroke: Focal Stenosis, Coexistent Stenosis, and Collateral Flow

J. Zhong, Xiangyan Chen, T.W.H. Leung, A. Ou, X. Shi, Y. Cai, Y. Huang, K.S. Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


© 2015 by the American Society of Neuroimaging.Increased cerebral blood flow velocity of basilar artery (BA) is common but often neglected. By using digital subtraction angiography (DSA) to detect intracranial large artery stenosis, we performed transcranial Doppler (TCD) to evaluate cerebral hemodynamic changes of stroke patients. Acute stroke patients with TCD-detected raised peak systolic velocity (PSV) in BA (?100 cm/second) were recruited. RESULTS: Among 91 recruited patients, BA stenosis (>50%) was confirmed by using DSA in 29 patients (32%), among which 20 patients (70.0%) had coexistent internal carotid artery (ICA) and vertebral artery (VA) stenoses. Among patients without BA stenosis (n = 62, 68%), severe stenosis or occlusion of ICA was evaluated in 22 patients (22/62, 35.4%) and severe stenosis or occlusion of VA was detected in 22 patients (22/62, 35.4%). Among the values of PSV (120, 140, 160, and 180 cm/second) and the stenotic-to-prestenotic ratio (SPR) (1.5, 2.0, 2.5, and 3.0), 160 cm/second was found to show the highest predictive value (area under the receiver operator characteristic curve: .75, 95% CI: .65-.86), with a sensitivity of .70 and a specificity of .81. Apart from an intrinsic BA stenosis, high-grade steno-occlusion of ICA or VA may contribute a lot to induce an elevated flow velocity in BA. A higher value of cutoff point may increase the accuracy of diagnosing BA stenosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)922-926
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Neuroimaging
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Artery stenosis
  • Basilar artery
  • Digital subtraction angiography (DSA)
  • Stroke
  • Transcranial Doppler (TCD)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology

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