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Investig Magn Reson Imaging. 2017 Dec;21(4):242-251. English. Original Article.
Ryu HJ , Jeon SJ , Choi SS .
Department of Radiology, Wonkwang University Hospital, Iksan, Korea.


To investigate the association of carotid intraplaque hemorrhage (IPH) with acute cerebral ischemic events and progression of stenosis using magnetic resonance (MR) imaging.

Materials and Methods

From April 2014 to December 2016, 53 patients underwent carotid plaque MR imaging, including magnetization-prepared rapid acquisition with gradient-echo (MPRAGE) sequence. A total of 66 carotid arteries in 53 patients had carotid stenosis, and they were included in this study. Carotid arteries were classified according to the presence of IPH, the age of hemorrhage, and degree of stenosis. We assessed ipsilateral cerebrovascular event rates and progression of stenosis between the IPH and no-IPH groups.


Of the 61 carotid arteries assessed, 34 (56%) had IPH, and 27 (44%) had no IPH. Acute cerebral ischemic events were more frequent in the IPH group (47% vs. 22%, P = 0.045), especially in the < 30%-stenosis group (100% vs. 0%, P = 0.028). However, there was no significant difference in the incidence of ischemic events according to the age of hemorrhage (50% vs. 44%, P = 0.492). Among the 61 carotid arteries, 20 carotid arteries had previously undergone carotid artery imaging and were evaluated for plaque progression. The trend for progression of stenosis favored the IPH group versus the no-IPH group, with a marginal P-value (20% ± 12.7 vs. 9.6% ± 5.7, P = 0.063).


IPH was associated with an increased incidence of acute ischemic events, especially in the mild-stenosis group and it was also associated with progression of stenosis. Evaluation of the carotid IPH by carotid plaque MR could improve discrimination of carotid plaques that cause ischemic events and progression of stenosis.

Copyright © 2019. Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors.