Middle cerebral artery dolichoectasia in a young woman with a previous stroke


Alfredo Puca, Istituto di Neurochirurgia, Università Cattolica, L.go A. Gemelli 8, 00168 Rome, Italy (tel.: + 39 06 3015 4841; fax: + 39 06 3051343; e-mail: alfredo.puca@rm.unicatt.it).


We observed a 32-year-old female who had suffered from a left hemisphere ischemic stroke with right hemiparesis at the age of seven. At that time, a CT scan demonstrated a left ischemic lesion in nucleo-capsular region and a cerebral angiogram documented a complete occlusion of the supraclinoid segment of the internal carotid artery. When we observed the patient neurological examination demonstrated a moderate right brachio-crural hemiparesis. A brain MRI showed an old ischemic lesion involving the left nucleo-capsular and ‘flow voids’ suggestive for a vascular malformation in the left sylvian region. A cerebral rotational angiogram with 3-D reconstructions demonstrated a dolichoectatic left middle cerebral artery with an unusual ‘corkscrew’ aspect. Middle cerebral artery dolichoectasia is a rare pathological condition that may manifest with a stroke. The patients with intracranial arterial dolichoectasia (IADE) are most often hypertensive elderly men, and, to the best of our knowledge, an ischemic stroke associated with IADE has never been reported in children.