The echocolor Doppler is an excellent tool in screening for vertebral dissection defined as the splitting of the arterial wall of the vertebral artery.
In the vertebral artery dissection, ultrasonographic specific signs (segmental dilation of the vessel, eccentric channel) are detectable in only 20% of patients, while nonspecific signs (low reflective thrombus, high-resistance spectral waveform, or absence of flow with no spectral Doppler waveform) are detectable in 92% of patients.
Emergency echocolor Doppler is very useful in the initial assessment of patients who are thought to have a vertebral dissection (unilateral headache without focal neurology): although the echocolor Doppler most frequent signs are indirect and not specific, an abnormal pattern of flow is identified in more than 90% of patients.
In this lesson the echocolor-Doppler findings of the vertebral artery dissections will be presented.
Franco Accorsi, MD
Member of the Order of Physician of Bologna n° 6728
I am a specialist in Medical Angiology and I am based in Bologna, Italy. Until 2008 (voluntary resignation) I worked at Maggiore Hospital in Bologna as "Dirigente Medico" in the Department of Internal Medicine and as Angiologist in the Angiology Unit with a position of "Alta Professionalità" in "Vascular Ecography and Angiology".
I am currently working in Bologna as an independent professional in the areas of angiology and vascular diagnostics.
I have been a speaker at national and international courses/congress and I have taught duplex ultrasound method in GIUV and SIUMB courses at the Maggiore Hospital, Bologna and courses of echocolor Doppler of extracranial and intracranial arteries at the Stroke Unit of S. Maria Nuova Hospital, Reggio Emilia.