Background To assess if leukoaraiosis severity is associated with outcome in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS) following endovascular thrombectomy, and to propose a leukoaraiosis-related modification to the ASPECTS score.
Methods A retrospective review was completed of AIS patients that underwent mechanical thrombectomy for anterior circulation large vessel occlusion. The primary outcome measure was 90-day mRS. A proposed Leukoaraiosis-ASPECTS (“L-ASPECTS”) was calculated by subtracting from the traditional ASPECT based on leukoaraiosis severity (1 point subtracted if mild, 2 if moderate, 3 if severe). L-ASEPCTS score performance was validated using a consecutive cohort of 75 AIS LVO patients.
Results 174 patients were included in this retrospective analysis: average age: 68.0±9.1. 28 (16.1%) had no leukoaraiosis, 66 (37.9%) had mild, 62 (35.6%) had moderate, and 18 (10.3%) had severe. Leukoaraiosis severity was associated with worse 90-day mRS among all patients (P=0.0005). Both L-ASPECTS and ASPECTS were associated with poor outcomes, but the area under the curve (AUC) was higher with L-ASPECTS (P<0.0001 and AUC=0.7 for L-ASPECTS; P=0.04 and AUC=0.59 for ASPECTS). In the validation cohort, the AUC for L-ASPECTS was 0.79 while the AUC for ASPECTS was 0.70. Of patients that had successful reperfusion (mTICI 2b/3), the AUC for traditional ASPECTS in predicting good functional outcome was 0.80: AUC for L-ASPECTS was 0.89.
Conclusions Leukoaraiosis severity on pre-mechanical thrombectomy NCCT is associated with worse 90-day outcome in patients with AIS following endovascular recanalization, and is an independent risk factor for worse outcomes. A proposed L-ASPECTS score had stronger association with outcome than the traditional ASPECTS score.
Data availability statement
Data are available upon reasonable request. De-identified patient data are available for review by request from primary author. Benson.firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Correction notice Since this paper was first published, the middle initial C has been added to the author name John Benson.
Contributors JCB wrote the first draft, assisted with data collection, and edited the final manuscript. SS, IM, DN, and AAR assisted with data collection and with editing of the final manuscript. DFK assisted with planning and execution of the project, and with final editing. WB assisted with statistical support and with editing of the final manuscript.
Funding Seyed Seyedsaadat is supported by a post-doctoral fellowship from the AHA (award #19POST34381067).
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.