Long-term follow-up of cerebral infarction patients with proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy.
With proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy it is possible to measure the content of various brain metabolites in vivo, including N-acetylaspartate (which may be used as a neuronal marker), creatine, choline, and lactate. The content of these brain metabolites was measured serially from the acute stage to the chronic stage of infarction. Regional cerebral blood flow was also measured within the affected areas. These factors were compared with the clinical outcome.
Six patients with ischemic stroke were examined serially from the acute stage (< or = 2 days) to the chronic stage (> 6 months) with proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Cerebral blood flow was measured with single-photon emission-computed tomography with 99mTc-labeled d,l-hexamethylenepropyleneamine oxime as flow tracer.
Lactate was found in all patients in the acute stage of stroke. Lactate was also found in the 3 largest lesions in the chronic stage; in 2 of these patients lactate was not found in the subacute stage. Reduced levels of N-acetylaspartate were found in 5 patients; in the sixth patient with a small lesion no reduction was found. In all lesions reduced blood flow was found in the acute and chronic stage, whereas hyperemia was found in 4 patients in the subacute stage.
In this preliminary study no clear correlation was found between the level of N-acetylaspartate or lactate in the acute stage of stroke and the clinical outcome; however, there does appear to be some connection between the reduction of cerebral blood flow and the spectroscopic findings in the chronic stage and to some extent the clinical outcome. Studies of larger clinical groups will be necessary to further elucidate the prognostic potential of proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy in human stroke.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association