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Abstract

A subgroup of children with arterial ischemic stroke in the pre- or perinatal period present with delayed diagnosis. We identified 22 children who met the following criteria: (1) normal neonatal neurological history, (2) hemiparesis and/or seizures first recognized after 2 months of age, and (3) computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging showing remote cerebral infarct. Laboratory evaluations included protein C, protein S, antithrombin, activated protein C resistance screen (APCR), Factor V Leiden (FVL), prothrombin gene defect, methylene tetrahydrofolate reductase variant (MTHFR), anticardiolipin antibody (ACLA), and lupus anticoagulant. Not all children received all tests. Age at last visit ranged from 8 months to 16.5 years (median 4 years). Twelve were boys. Fourteen had left hemisphere infarcts. Median age at presentation was 6 months. Eighteen had gestational complications. Fourteen children had at least transient coagulation abnormalities (ACLA = 11, ACLA + APCR = 1, APCR = 2 with FVL + MTHFR = 1); 6 of these children had family histories suggestive of thrombosis. Cardiac echocardiogram was unremarkable in the 15 tested. Outcomes included persistent hemiparesis in 22; speech, behavior, or learning problems in 12; and persistent seizures in 5, with no evidence of further stroke in any patient. The persistence and importance of coagulation abnormalities in this group need further study.