Intra-arterial application of nimodipine in reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome: A diagnostic tool in select cases?
ABSTRACT Differential diagnoses of the reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RCVS) include all forms of intracranial stenotic disease, such as primary or secondary vasculitis of the central nervous system. Here, we tested the hypothesis that angiographic response to intra-arterial nimodipine application may be helpful in differentiating between RCVS and other entities.
A digital subtraction angiographic (DSA) series of nine consecutive patients with suspected RCVS that were treated by intra-arterial nimodipine due to clinical worsening were retrospectively analyzed. Pre- and post-therapeutic DSA findings of patients with later-confirmed RCVS were compared to those in which another diagnosis was finally made.
Intra-arterial nimodipine resulted in a normalization of both the diameter of the main trunks of the cerebral vessels and the caliber of the peripheral vessels in all RCVS patients. This was not the case in the non-RCVS patients, in whom only a slight general vasodilatation was observed.
Our preliminary results indicate that angiographic response to intra-arterial application might be a helpful differential diagnostic tool in select patients with suspected RCVS.
- Cephalalgia 06/2011; 31(10):1067-70. DOI:10.1177/0333102411410084 · 4.12 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndromes (RCVS) are characterized by recurrent acute severe headaches, namely thunderclap headaches, and multifocal segmental vasoconstrictions. Interest has arisen in the definitions, clinical presentations, differential diagnoses, risk factors and complications of RCVS. This article will comprehensively review the milestone monographs and the latest research work addressing these issues. Studies that have focused on the relationship between RCVS and thunderclap headache will be detailed. We will also discuss research on the enigmatic pathophysiology and potential therapeutic approaches. Up-to-date information and challenges, undergoing studies and future research directions will be deeply probed.Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics 09/2011; 11(9):1265-76. DOI:10.1586/ern.11.112 · 2.83 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RCVS) typically presents with recurrent thunderclap headaches and neurological deficits that are usually self-limiting. The intra-arterial (IA) use of vasodilators for RCVS has been reported for severe cases. Patients with RCVS have the potential for serious and permanent neurological deficits. It is a rare disorder, with a recent surge in the number of reports, and probably continues to be under-diagnosed. We report two patients with RCVS with severe neurological sequelae, treated in a large tertiary hospital. Both patients received high-dose cortico steroids due to the possibility of angiitis of the central nervous system, but they deteriorated neurologically, which suggests that steroids may have a deleterious effect in RCVS. Treatment with IA verapamil resulted in reversal of vasoconstriction, but multiple treatments were necessary. Therefore, IA administration of verapamil is a possible treatment for severe RCVS, but there is only limited sustained improvement in vasodilation that may require repetitive treatments with a currently undetermined optimal treatment interval.Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 11/2011; 19(1):174-6. DOI:10.1016/j.jocn.2011.06.016 · 1.32 Impact Factor