Background: Plasma d-dimer is known to be a useful clinical marker of thrombogenic status, and d-dimer is used as a diagnostic marker for acute aortic dissection (AAD). Little is known, however, regarding the clinical value of d-dimer for diagnosis of asymptomatic AAD in patients with ischemic stroke. We investigated whether d-dimer could be used for early diagnosis of AAD with isolated neurological symptoms in ischemic stroke patients. Methods and Results: We evaluated a total of 1,236 consecutive patients with symptomatic ischemic stroke without chest or back pain who underwent either head computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. d-Dimer was measured within 24 h after onset. There were 9 patients with Stanford type A AAD and they had significantly higher d-dimer than the patients without AAD (mean, 46.47 ±54.48 μg/ml; range, 6.9–167.1 μg/ml vs. 2.33±3.58 μg/ml, 0.3–57.9 μg/ml, P<0.001). When a cut-off of 6.9 μg/ml was adopted for d-dimer on the basis of receiver operating characteristics analysis, the sensitivity and specificity for AAD were 100% and 94.8%, respectively, while the positive and negative predictive values were 14.7% and 100%, respectively. Conclusions: d-Dimer might be a useful marker for the early diagnosis of AAD with isolated neurological symptoms in ischemic stroke patients. Whole-body contrast-enhanced computed tomography should be performed in ischemic stroke patients who have high d-dimer.
- Acute aortic dissection
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine