• Korean population;
  • posterior circulation stroke

To understand the characteristics of posterior circulation ischemic stroke (PCS) in the Korean population better, we retrospectively reviewed the data from the Hallym Stroke Registry (HSR). We analyzed the demographic features, risk factors, stroke subtypes, lesion distributions and clinical outcomes of 591 consecutive patients with PCS, enrolled in HSR between January 1996 and July 2002. PCS was 39.8% of all ischemic strokes. Mean age of PCS patients was 63.4 years and 55.7% were men. Hypertension was the most common risk factor (69.9%). However, potential cardioembolic sources were found only in 11.0%. The most frequent stroke subtype was large artery disease (50.0%), followed by small vessel disease (33.8%). Only 5.2% of patients were classified as affected with cardioembolism. The most common location of infarcts was in the middle territory (36.5%), followed by distal (28.1%), proximal (19.0%), and multiple territories (16.4%). The hospital mortality rate (4.1%) and discharge outcome of PCS were comparable with those of the anterior circulation stroke (ACS). In conclusion, the etiology and lesion topography of PCS in the Korean population appeared to be different from those of the Caucasians.