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J NeuroIntervent Surg 5:419-425 doi:10.1136/neurintsurg-2012-010352
  • Ischemic stroke
  • Review

Current differential diagnoses and treatment options of vascular occlusions presenting as bilateral thalamic infarcts: a review of the literature

  1. Charles J Prestigiacomo1,3,4
  1. 1Department of Neurological Surgery, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, New Jersey, USA
  2. 2School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA
  3. 3Department of Radiology, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, New Jersey, USA
  4. 4Department of Neurology and Neuroscience, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, New Jersey, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Charles J Prestigiacomo, Department of Neurological Surgery, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, 90 Bergen Street, Suite 8100, PO Box 1709, Newark, NJ 07101-1709, USA; c.prestigiacomo{at}umdnj.edu
  • Received 11 March 2012
  • Revised 12 June 2012
  • Accepted 14 June 2012
  • Published Online First 17 July 2012

Abstract

bilateral thalamic infarctions are rare and usually caused by vascular occlusions. When symptomatic, it is important to make a distinction between different vascular etiologies in order to provide an effective and timely therapeutic response. Clinical presentations may not adequately differentiate between the vascular etiologies alone. It is therefore important to use imaging technologies to distinguish appropriately the origin of the infarct so that proper treatment can be administered. Advanced imaging techniques, such as CT angiography and MR angiography, have proved useful for distinguishing between arterial and venous causes of bithalamic infarctions. Bilateral thalamic venous infarctions can be treated with anticoagulation medication and with thrombolysis in more severe cases. Bilateral thalamic arterial infarctions may be treated with thrombolysis.

 

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