Tzu Chi Medical Journal

: 2019  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 292--293

Incomplete anterior choroidal artery syndrome in a pregnant female

Liyana Najwa Inche Mat1, Wan Aliaa Wan Sulaiman1, Fan Kee Hoo2, Laila Mastura Ahmad Apandi3, Hamidon Basri2,  
1 Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences; Medical Gerontology Laboratory, Malaysian Research Institute on Ageing, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia
2 Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia
3 Department of Imaging, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Liyana Najwa Inche Mat
Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor Daruh Ehsan, Selangor

How to cite this article:
Mat LN, Sulaiman WA, Hoo FK, Ahmad Apandi LM, Basri H. Incomplete anterior choroidal artery syndrome in a pregnant female.Tzu Chi Med J 2019;31:292-293

How to cite this URL:
Mat LN, Sulaiman WA, Hoo FK, Ahmad Apandi LM, Basri H. Incomplete anterior choroidal artery syndrome in a pregnant female. Tzu Chi Med J [serial online] 2019 [cited 2020 Sep 18 ];31:292-293
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Full Text

A 30-year-old female gravida 3 at 30 weeks of gestation presented with mild left occipital headache followed by sudden onset right-sided numbness for the last 12 h. On examination, she was found to have right-sided hemianopia and hemianesthesia. There was no limb weakness and no cerebellar signs or impairment of higher cortical dysfunction. Blood pressure was normal at 117/73 mmHg. An urgent noncontrast computed tomography (CT) brain showed the presence of ill-defined white matter hypodensities predominantly in the left temporo-occipital lobe [Figure 1]. Interestingly, subsequent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain showed hyperintensities in the left thalamus, left parahippocampus, and posterior limb of the left internal capsule, which suggests infarction in the left anterior choroidal artery territory. The diffusion-weighted imaging and apparent diffusion coefficient which were high and low, respectively, confirmed that it was an acute stroke [Figure 2]. Extensive investigations including echocardiogram, carotid Doppler ultrasound, serum lipid, glucose, immunologic, and thrombophilia screen did not show any abnormalities. Antiplatelet therapy was initiated, and there was complete resolution of the neurological deficit over the next few days.{Figure 1}{Figure 2}

Anterior choroidal artery infarct was first described by Foix et al. in 1925. Complete occlusion of the anterior choroidal artery is labeled as anterior choroidal artery syndrome, in which patients present with a triad of hemiplegia, hemianesthesia, and contralateral hemianopia[1]. Fortunately, an incomplete form is more common, and the clinical presentations are less severe, with a better prognosis. The prevalence of anterior choroidal artery infarct is estimated to be around 2.5%–11% out of total ischemic strokes[2].

Anterior choroidal artery is a distal branch of the internal carotid artery. It supplies the posterior two-thirds of the posterior limb of the internal capsule, the nearby optic and acoustic radiations, the medial globus pallidus, and the tail of the caudate nucleus. However, anatomic variations may exist where the anterior choroidal artery arises from the intracerebral carotid bifurcation or from the posterior communicating artery instead of the internal carotid artery, which leads to variations in the territory supplied among individuals. Furthermore, the structures supplied by anterior choroidal artery have rich collaterals from near arteries leading to a wide range of clinical manifestations.

The most prevalent risk factor for anterior choroidal artery infarct is hypertension, followed by hyperlipidemia, smoking, and diabetes mellitus. However, the underlying prothrombotic state of pregnancy may also predispose to anterior choroidal artery stroke due to changes in cardiovascular hemodynamics and in the coagulation mechanisms during pregnancy. The risk is especially higher during the third trimester and postpartum period[3]. Assessment in consecutive imaging of CT or MRI scans and in multiple sequences such as coronal, axial, and sagittal view is paramount in diagnosing anterior choroidal artery infarct due to its variability in territorial distribution which may lead to confusion with other types of large artery occlusion such as middle cerebral artery (MCA), posterior cerebral artery (PCA), or MCA-PCA watershed infarct. This case highlights the typical CT and MRI brain findings in anterior choroidal artery infarct.

Declaration of patient consent

The authors certify that an appropriate patient consent form has been obtained. In the form, the patient has given her consent for her images and other clinical information to be reported in the journal. The patient understands that her name and initials will not be published and due efforts will be made to conceal her identity.

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