Hematologic disorders and ischemic stroke. A selective review.
More than a dozen primary hematologic disorders have been associated with ischemic stroke. Inherited deficiencies of antithrombin III, protein C, and protein S have been linked with stroke in case reports; optimal screening requires functional as well as antigenic assays. Antiphospholipid antibodies and lupus anticoagulants are the most frequently identified acquired states associated with ischemic stroke. Polycythemia vera, sickle cell anemia, sickle-C disease, and essential thrombocythemia are the major disorders of formed blood elements causing stroke. Special, step-wise screening for occult prothrombotic entities in stroke patients is recommended for young persons with stroke of uncertain cause, for those with prior venous thrombosis, for those with a family history of unusual thrombosis, and for those with no other explanation for recurrent stroke. Acquired, perhaps transient, abnormalities of platelets, coagulation inhibition, and fibrinolysis may contribute importantly to brain ischemia in synergy with other mechanisms, but at present these remain ill-defined. The contribution of prothrombotic diatheses to stroke is probably underrecognized and warrants further investigation.
- Copyright © 1990 by American Heart Association