Vol 26, No 5 (2019)
Published online: 2018-04-25

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Established and potential echocardiographic markers of embolism and their therapeutic implications in patients with ischemic stroke

Paulina E. Gąsiorek1, Maciej Banach2, Marek Maciejewski3, Andrzej Głąbiński4, Aleksandra Paduszyńska2, Jacek Rysz5, Agata Bielecka-Dąbrowa6
Pubmed: 29718528
Cardiol J 2019;26(5):438-450.


Cardiogenic strokes comprised 11% of all strokes and 25% of ischemic strokes. An accurate identification
of the cause of stroke is necessary in order to prepare an adequate preventive strategy. In this review
the confirmed and potential causes of embolic strokes are presented, which can be detected in echocardiography in the context of present treatment guidelines and gaps in evidence. There remains a need for further studies assessing the meaning of potential cardiac sources of embolism and establishment of rules for optimal medical prevention (antiplatelet therapy [APT] vs. oral anticoagulation [OAC]) and
interventional procedures to reduce the incidence of ischemic strokes. Currently available data does not provide definitive evidence on the comparative benefits of OAC vs. APT in patients with cryptogenic stroke or embolic stroke of undetermined source. There is a lack of antithrombotic treatment scheme in the time between stroke and the completed diagnosis of potential sources of thromboembolism.

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