What is the role of vascular imaging in the diagnosis of transient ischemic attack (TIA)?

Updated: Dec 03, 2018
  • Author: Ashish Nanda, MD; Chief Editor: Andrew K Chang, MD, MS  more...
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Vascular imaging for TIA includes Doppler ultrasonography, CT angiography (CTA), and magnetic resonance angiography (MRA). CTA is of increasing value in identifying occlusive disease in the cerebrovascular circulation. MRA is another alternative for imaging vessels in both the brain and the neck. Conventional catheter angiography can be performed when the other modalities are unavailable or yield discordant results.

Carotid Doppler ultrasonography of the neck can be used to identify patients in need of urgent surgical or endovascular therapy. Transcranial Doppler can be a complementary examination evaluating the patency of cerebral vessels and collateral circulation.

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