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Keywords:

  • Alzheimer's disease;
  • caffeine;
  • decreased risk;
  • neuroprotection;
  • risk factor;
  • xanthine

We have completed a survey of European neurological practice concerning cerebral vasculitis. Twenty-nine respondents from 15 countries provided information concerning the diagnosis and management. The results confirmed the anticipated low frequency of the disease, but also illustrated the power of any putative collaborative effort. Interestingly, there was a wide variation in clinical practice, in particular concerning the perceived importance of cerebral angiography as a diagnostic test and the very common use of steroids as first-line treatment, rather than more potent immunosuppressive agents. This variation is probably to be explained at least, in part, by the absence of any firm evidence base to inform clinical practice. A European collaborative effort – in which there has emerged considerable interest – offers a realistic opportunity to generate sound clinical evidence and thence scientifically robust practical guidelines.