Current differential diagnoses and treatment options of vascular occlusions presenting as bilateral thalamic infarcts: a review of the literature

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Abstract

Bilateral thalamic infarctions are rare and usually caused by vascular occlusions. When symptomatic, it is important to make a distinction between different vascular etiologies in order to provide an effective and timely therapeutic response. Clinical presentations may not adequately differentiate between the vascular etiologies alone. It is therefore important to use imaging technologies to distinguish appropriately the origin of the infarct so that proper treatment can be administered. Advanced imaging techniques, such as CT angiography and MR angiography, have proved useful for distinguishing between arterial and venous causes of bithalamic infarctions. Bilateral thalamic venous infarctions can be treated with anticoagulation medication and with thrombolysis in more severe cases. Bilateral thalamic arterial infarctions may be treated with thrombolysis.

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