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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 1998 Sep;37(9):551-4.

Basilar artery occlusion and the dense artery sign in the newborn.

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Department of Neurology, West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown 26506-9180, USA.


A child with basilar artery occlusion in the neonatal period is reported. The occlusion was documented by unenhanced computed tomography performed in the neonatal period demonstrating a "dense" artery at the tip of the basilar artery. The pattern of cerebral damage on MRI scan at 10 years of age confirmed the site of the vascular occlusion. The evidence suggests that embolization was the operating pathogenic mechanism of cerebral vascular occlusion. Neonatal arterial thrombosis involving the carotid circulation has been well documented and may be due to many pathological factors including direct trauma to the carotid artery and embolization from remote sites. Thrombosis of the vertebral artery in the neonate is only rarely reported and only in association with significant cervical trauma. A second child with a similar pattern of cerebral injury demonstrated on neuroimaging is described suggesting that this event may be more common than recognized. The clinical features of basilar artery occlusion as seen in the adult are not apparent in the neonate. Recognition of the neuroimaging characteristics seen in this condition may help to provide the clinician with a reasonable pathogenetic explanation for unexplained cerebral injury.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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