Background and Objectives
Cerebrovascular manifestations in neurosarcoidosis (NS) were previously considered rare but are being increasingly recognized. We report our preliminary experience in patients with NS who underwent high-resolution vessel wall imaging (VWI).
A total of 13 consecutive patients with NS underwent VWI. Images were analyzed by 2 neuroradiologists in consensus. The assessment included segment-wise evaluation of larger- and medium-sized vessels (internal carotid artery, M1-M3 middle cerebral artery; A1-A3 anterior cerebral artery; V4 segments of vertebral arteries; basilar artery; and P1-P3 posterior cerebral artery), lenticulostriate perforator vessels, and medullary and deep cerebral veins. Cortical veins were not assessed due to flow-related artifacts. Brain biopsy findings were available in 6 cases and were also reviewed.
Mean patient age was 54.9 years (33–71 years) with an M:F of 8:5. Mean duration between initial diagnosis and VWI study was 18 months. Overall, 9/13 (69%) patients had vascular abnormalities. Circumferential large vessel enhancement was seen in 3/13 (23%) patients, whereas perforator vessel involvement was seen in 6/13 (46%) patients. Medullary and deep vein involvement was also seen in 6/13 patients. In addition, 7/13 (54%) patients had microhemorrhages in susceptibility-weighted imaging, and 4/13 (31%) had chronic infarcts. On biopsy, 5/6 cases showed perivascular granulomas with vessel wall involvement in all 5 cases.
Our preliminary findings suggest that involvement of intracranial vascular structures may be a common finding in patients with NS and should be routinely looked for. These findings appear concordant with previously reported autopsy literature and need to be validated on a larger scale.