Susceptibility-weighted imaging reveals cerebral microvascular injury in severe COVID-19
Author(s)Conklin, John; Frosch, Matthew; Mukerji, Shibani S.; Rapalino, Otto; Maher, Mary D.; Schaefer, Pamela W.; Lev, Michael H.; Gonzalez, R.G.; Das, Sudeshna; Champion, Samantha N.; Magdamo, Colin; Sen, Pritha; Harrold, G. Kyle; Alabsi, Haitham; Normandin, Erica; Shaw, Bennett; Lemieux, Jacob E.; Sabeti, Pardis; Branda, John A.; Brown, Emery Neal; Westover, M Brandon; Huang, Susie Y.; Edlow, Brian L.; ... Show more Show less
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We evaluated the incidence, distribution, and histopathologic correlates of microvascular brain lesions in patients with severe COVID-19. Sixteen consecutive patients admitted to the intensive care unit with severe COVID-19 undergoing brain MRI for evaluation of coma or neurologic deficits were retrospectively identified. Eleven patients had punctate susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI) lesions in the subcortical and deep white matter, eight patients had >10 SWI lesions, and four patients had lesions involving the corpus callosum. The distribution of SWI lesions was similar to that seen in patients with hypoxic respiratory failure, sepsis, and disseminated intravascular coagulation. Brain autopsy in one patient revealed that SWI lesions corresponded to widespread microvascular injury, characterized by perivascular and parenchymal petechial hemorrhages and microscopic ischemic lesions. Collectively, these radiologic and histopathologic findings add to growing evidence that patients with severe COVID-19 are at risk for multifocal microvascular hemorrhagic and ischemic lesions in the subcortical and deep white matter.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Institute for Medical Engineering and Science; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Journal of the Neurological Sciences
Conklin, John et al. "Susceptibility-weighted imaging reveals cerebral microvascular injury in severe COVID-19." Journal of the Neurological Sciences 421 (February 2021): 117308 © 2021 The Author(s)
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