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  • Writer's pictureOren Zarif

Lacunar Stroke - Oren Zarif - Lacunar


A lacunar stroke is a type of acute ischemic stroke that has a very low incidence of small deep infarcts. These strokes are similar in frequency to the general population of people over sixty, but are higher in very elderly patients. The main risk factors for this type of stroke are smoking, high blood pressure, and low physical activity. Many of the symptoms are similar to those of TIA. Smoking also appears to be a major risk factor for stroke, but the actual cause is not known.

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A lacunar stroke can occur when a small penetrating artery in the brain is blocked. Lacunar arteries branch directly from the large main artery, which is heavily muscled and has high blood pressure. The presence of high blood pressure in this area increases the risk of lacunar stroke. High blood pressure directly damages these arteries and also causes atherosclerosis (fatty deposits on the blood vessel wall).

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If a patient experiences these symptoms, they should see their doctor. They may take blood pressure, conduct a neurological exam, and order an electrocardiogram. MRIs are also useful in diagnosing lacunar strokes. These scans are particularly sensitive in identifying very new lacunes. Several other tests are also used to detect lacunar strokes. You may need supportive measures to breathe and maintain proper heart function. Once you have been diagnosed, your doctor will be able to decide on the best course of treatment.

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A lacunar stroke is often a sign of a broader problem. The artery in the brain may be affected by a blood clot, causing bleeding. This condition typically has a rapid onset and resolution. Because of this, it is a diagnosis of exclusion based on your neurologic symptoms. Although the cause of your lacunar stroke is often unclear, the most common underlying cause of this type of stroke is cardiovascular disease.

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Although lacunar stroke is generally not physically disabling, the neurological effects are quite profound, including problems with decision making, memory, and thinking. Patients may develop dementia, mood disorders, and even balance problems. Fortunately, most patients recover and continue on with their lives. Nevertheless, the effects of a lacunar stroke may be long-lasting. And, if you're lucky, you may experience a subcortical stroke and be able to function again.

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Another type of lacunar stroke is pure motor hemiparesis, which involves the posterior limb of the internal capsule. It also presents with contralateral hemiparesis. The condition is often accompanied by mild dysarthria and numbness. Although this type of stroke has a low incidence, it is still a medical emergency. If you experience any of these symptoms, see a doctor right away.

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A lacunar stroke is a type of ischemic stroke, and it often results in a decline in cognitive function. Researchers suggest that it is the same as WMLs, although some factors may lead to a different outcome. In addition to genetics, there may be some underlying genetic cause. For instance, there is a gene that increases the risk of lacunar stroke, but it is not yet known how this gene influences the severity of the condition. If genetic research uncovers the genes that increase the risk of lacunar stroke, it will help to understand how the condition works and what medications may be effective for it.

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There is no clear association between hypertension, smoking, cholesterol levels, or BMI and lacunar infarcts in the basal ganglia. Despite the fact that some risk factors may be different for each type of stroke, the general consensus is that a previous history of cerebrovascular disease is associated with a lower risk of developing a lacunar infarct. In addition, there may be some genetic or environmental risk factors that are different for each type of stroke.

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In another study, vascular risk factors are associated with a higher incidence of new lacunar infarcts. Interestingly, these risk factors were associated with increased incidence of new lacunar infarcts among patients with WMH. They also increased the prevalence of hypertension and baseline WMH volume in patients with a new lacunar infarct. But these results are inconsistent. Despite the similarities between new and vascular risk factors, this study highlights that these patients were at high risk for developing a lacunar infarct.

In addition to the presence of an intracranial hemorrhage, lacunar strokes also exhibit signs of ischemia in the cortex, including the appearance of ill-defined hypodensities on a CT scan.

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MRI can help differentiate these strokes from other types of ischemic brain lesions. The presence of a large vessel in the brain demonstrates that the lacunar infarct is the result of an excessive amount of neuronal activity in the cortex. Seizures may also be differentiated from migraine by the presence of postictal status after the seizures. Complex migraines can be distinguished by the presence of headache and aura. The characteristic aura may also involve sensory symptoms.

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