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Stroke ; 52(7): 2422-2426, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1195875


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Stroke may complicate coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection based on clinical hypercoagulability. We investigated whether transcranial Doppler ultrasound has utility for identifying microemboli and clinically relevant cerebral blood flow velocities (CBFVs) in COVID-19. METHODS: We performed transcranial Doppler for a consecutive series of patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection admitted to 2 intensive care units at a large academic center including evaluation for microembolic signals. Variables specific to hypercoagulability and blood flow including transthoracic echocardiography were analyzed as a part of routine care. RESULTS: Twenty-six patients were included in this analysis, 16 with confirmed COVID-19 infection. Of those, 2 had acute ischemic stroke secondary to large vessel occlusion. Ten non-COVID stroke patients were included for comparison. Two COVID-negative patients had severe acute respiratory distress syndrome and stroke due to large vessel occlusion. In patients with COVID-19, relatively low CBFVs were observed diffusely at median hospital day 4 (interquartile range, 3-9) despite low hematocrit (29.5% [25.7%-31.6%]); CBFVs in comparable COVID-negative stroke patients were significantly higher compared with COVID-positive stroke patients. Microembolic signals were not detected in any patient. Median left ventricular ejection fraction was 60% (interquartile range, 60%-65%). CBFVs were correlated with arterial oxygen content, and C-reactive protein (Spearman ρ=0.28 [P=0.04]; 0.58 [P<0.001], respectively) but not with left ventricular ejection fraction (ρ=-0.18; P=0.42). CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort of critically ill patients with COVID-19 infection, we observed lower than expected CBFVs in setting of low arterial oxygen content and low hematocrit but not associated with suppression of cardiac output.

Blood Flow Velocity , Brain/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Cerebrovascular Circulation , Ischemic Stroke/diagnostic imaging , Adult , Aged , Blood Gas Analysis , Brain/blood supply , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , COVID-19/physiopathology , Case-Control Studies , Critical Illness , Female , Humans , Ischemic Stroke/physiopathology , Male , Middle Aged , Oxygen/blood , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/diagnostic imaging , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/physiopathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Stroke Volume/physiology , Ultrasonography, Doppler, Transcranial
Stroke ; 52(5): 1885-1894, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1166635


The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 or coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has raised concerns about the correlation with this viral illness and increased risk of stroke. Although it is too early in the pandemic to know the strength of the association between COVID-19 and stroke, it is an opportune time to review the relationship between acute viral illnesses and stroke. Here, we summarize pathophysiological principles and available literature to guide understanding of how viruses may contribute to ischemic stroke. After a review of inflammatory mechanisms, we summarize relevant pathophysiological principles of vasculopathy, hypercoagulability, and hemodynamic instability. We will end by discussing mechanisms by which several well-known viruses may cause stroke in an effort to inform our understanding of the relationship between COVID-19 and stroke.

Brain Ischemia/complications , Brain Ischemia/physiopathology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/epidemiology , Ischemic Stroke/complications , Ischemic Stroke/physiopathology , Acute Disease , Blood Coagulation , Brain Ischemia/virology , Hemodynamics , Herpesvirus 3, Human , Humans , Inflammation/physiopathology , Ischemic Stroke/virology , Pandemics , Plaque, Atherosclerotic/physiopathology , Risk , Thrombophilia/physiopathology , Thrombosis/physiopathology , Vascular Diseases/physiopathology , Virus Diseases/physiopathology
Neurology ; 95(12): 537-542, 2020 09 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-945311


Inclusion is the deliberate practice of ensuring that each individual is heard, all personal traits are respected, and all can make meaningful contributions to achieve their full potential. As coronavirus disease 2019 spreads globally and across the United States, we have viewed this pandemic through the lens of equity and inclusion. Here, we discuss how this pandemic has magnified preexisting health and social disparities and will summarize why inclusion is an essential tool to traverse this uncertain terrain and discuss strategies that can be implemented at organizational and individual levels to improve inclusion and address inequities moving forward.

Coronavirus Infections , Delivery of Health Care , Leadership , Neurology , Organizational Culture , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Societies, Medical , Vulnerable Populations , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Health Workforce , Humans , Nervous System Diseases , Poverty , Racism , SARS-CoV-2 , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Socioeconomic Factors , United States