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Association of Carotid Artery Endothelial Signal Intensity Gradient with Unilateral Large Artery Ischemic Stroke


Chan-Hyuk Lee, Sang Hyuk Lee, Young I Cho, Seul-Ki Jeong.


Endothelial shear stress, Ischemic stroke, Large artery atherosclerosis, Carotid artery


Background: Common carotid artery (CCA) and internal carotid artery (ICA) are aligned linearly, but their hemodynamic role in ischemic stroke has not been studied in depth.

Objectives: We aimed to investigate whether CCA and ICA endothelial shear stress (ESS) could be associated with the ischemic stroke of large artery atherosclerosis (LAA).

Methods: We enrolled consecutive patients with unilateral ischemic stroke of LAA and healthy controls aged >60 years in the stroke center of Jeonbuk National University Hospital. All patients and controls were examined with carotid artery time-of-flight magnetic resonance angiography, and their endothelial signal intensity gradients (SIGs) were determined, as a measure of ESS. The effect of right or left unilateral stroke on the association between carotid artery endothelial SIG and ischemic stroke of LAA was assessed.

Results: In total, the results from 132 patients with ischemic stroke of LAA and 121 controls were analyzed. ICA endothelial SIG showed significant and independent associations with the same-sided unilateral ischemic stroke of LAA, even after adjusting for the potential confounders including carotid stenosis, whereas CCA endothelial SIG showed a significant association with the presence of the ischemic stroke of LAA.

Conclusion: Although CCA and ICA are located with continuity, the hemodynamics and their roles in large artery ischemic stroke should be considered separately. Further studies are needed to delineate the pathophysiologic roles of ESS in CCA and ICA for large artery ischemic stroke.


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