Stroke MRI in intracerebral hemorrhage: is there a perihemorrhagic penumbra?

Peter D Schellinger, Jochen B Fiebach, Katrin Hoffmann, Kristina Becker, Berk Orakcioglu, Rainer Kollmar, Eric Jüttler, Peter Schramm, Stefan Schwab, Klaus Sartor, Werner Hacke


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Cerebral ischemia has been proposed as a contributing mechanism to secondary neuronal injury after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). The search for surrogate parameters that allow treatment stratification for spontaneous ICH continues. We sought to assess the presence and prognostic effect of perihemorrhagic ischemic changes and hypoperfusion in a prospective stroke MRI study.

METHODS: We performed stroke MRI in 32 patients with hyperacute ICH (mean, 16.9+/-17.2 mL) within 6 hours after symptom onset (mean, 3.1+/-1.3 hours). Clinical data at baseline (National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale) and on day 90 (Barthel Index, modified Rankin Scale) were assessed. Perihemorrhagic perfusion- and diffusion-weighted imaging changes were assessed in a 1-cm-wide area around the clot.

RESULTS: Despite a mild perihemorrhagic mean transit time prolongation of 0.7+/-1.1 second, there were no significant perihemorrhagic apparent diffusion coefficient or mean transit time changes indicating irreversible ischemia or hypoperfusion. ICH size, time to imaging, or clinical severity at baseline or outcome were not reflected by changes of relative apparent diffusion coefficient or perfusion-weighted imaging. ICH size correlated with baseline clinical severity (r=0.51, P=0.005). There was a significant association (P=0.0494) and a significant negative correlation (r=-0.468, P=0.0103) of perihemorrhagic perfusion change with time from symptom onset not associated with ICH size.

CONCLUSIONS: Perihemorrhagic hypoperfusion probably is a consequence of reduced metabolic demand (diaschisis) rather than a sign of ischemia. We found no evidence for a perihemorrhagic and potentially salvageable ischemic penumbra in hyperacute ICH. Further studies should address metabolic, toxic, apoptotic, and microvascular aspects.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)1674-9
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 07.2003


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