The significance of microembolic signals and new cerebral infarcts on the progression of neurological deficit in acute stroke patients with large artery stenosis

Q. Hao, W.H. Leung, C. Leung, C.T. Mok, H. Leung, Y. Soo, Xiangyan Chen, W. Lam, K.S. Wong

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18 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Early neurological deterioration is common in the acute phase after stroke. We sought to investigate the correlation between the progression of microembolic signal (MES), ischemic infarcts and the neurological deficits in the acute phase of stroke patients with large artery occlusive disease. Methods: Transient ischemic attack or stroke patients with relevant significant large artery stenosis (?50% diameter reduction) and admitted within 7 days of the symptom onset were recruited in this study. MES, infarcts on diffusion-weighted imaging and National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score were assessed on days 1 and 7 of recruitment. Results: Among 67 patients, 50.7% (34 of 67) had MES on day 1. Presence of MES correlated with both a higher number of infarcts (p = 0.006) and the incidence of multiple infarcts (?2 test, p = 0.002), but not with the NIHSS score. On day 7, MES was detected in 25.4% of the patients (17 of 67), 11.8% of them (2 of 17) displayed new or extended infarct on DWI (p = 0.14) and 29.4% (5 of 17) showed neurological improvement (p = 0.039). Among the patients with positive MES at baseline, NIHSS reduction was positively correlated with disappearance of MES on day 7 (MES disappearance vs. persistence group, 2.05 vs. 0.73, p = 0.023). Conclusions: Neither the disappearance of MES nor the changes in NIHSS score correlated with the progression of infarct. Disappearance of MES indicated better neurological improvement in the acute phase. Copyright © 2010 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)424-430
Number of pages7
JournalCerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Diffusion-weighted imaging
  • Microembolic signal
  • Transcranial Doppler

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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