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Cerebrovasc Dis. 2008;26(6):650-3. doi: 10.1159/000166842. Epub 2008 Nov 4.

Incidental unruptured intracranial aneurysms in patients with acute ischemic stroke.

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Department of Neurology, Catholic University of Korea, St. Mary's Hospital, Seoul, South Korea.



The management and clinical prognosis of incidental intracranial aneurysms in acute ischemic stroke patients have been understudied. We investigated the clinical outcome of acute ischemic stroke subjects with incidentally found intracranial aneurysms.


We consecutively included acute ischemic stroke patients within 7 days of onset. Their demographics, risk factors, stroke subtypes, antithrombotics use and modified Rankin scale (mRS) at 3 months after stroke were obtained. CT or MR angiography was used to diagnose the intracranial aneurysms. The development of an aneurysmal rupture was checked during the following 3 months.


Incidental intracranial aneurysms were found in 17 (6.6%) of the 258 patients. The female sex and old age were associated with the presence of incidental intracranial aneurysms (p = 0.001, 0.032). The most common site of aneurysm was at the distal internal carotid artery (n = 9), followed by the middle cerebral artery (n = 6). The diameters of the aneurysms ranged from 2.09 to 8.06 mm. All the participants except 1 who had cancer were taking antiplatelet agents. No aneurysmal rupture or subarachnoid hemorrhage happened until 3 months after stroke.There was no significant difference in excellent outcome (3-month mRS = 0, 1) between the patients with an aneurysm and those without (28.6 vs. 53.4%, p = 0.097).


There was no rupture of the incidentally found aneurysms in the patients with acute ischemic stroke during their first 3 months. The 3-month mRS was not affected by the presence of incidental intracranial aneurysm. A large cohort study and long-term follow-up are required.

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