Background: The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical features of progressing stroke of pontine infarction as small vessel disease. Methods: Enrolled 38 acute pontine infarctions were confirmed by magnetic resonance imaging and magnetic resonance angiography at the first and seventh days. Ten patients (26.3%) presented progression (NIH Stroke Scale ≥2 increase within 72 h). Results: Progressing patients showed no relation to the size and the distribution of lesion. Expansion of ischemic lesion showed correlation with basilar artery atherosclerosis. Stable lesion related to delayed worsening. Conclusion: These findings suggest that progressing stroke may be caused by not only the worsening of blood flow of ischemic lesion but also delayed neuronal death.
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