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WSC 2022 | Cerebral microbleeds and cognitive decline

Hsin-Hsi Tsai, MD, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan, explains how cerebral microbleeds (CMBs) are associated with neurodegenerative disease risk and cognitive decline. CMBs are small hypointensities of less than 10mm, visible on T2*-weighted and susceptibility-weighted MRI sequences. The chronic accumulation of these microhemorrhages is a marker of small vessel disease and ageing. CMBs are closely associated with stroke risk, in particular higher risk of future intracerebral hemorrhage. Studies also show that CMBs are associated with cognitive impairment and often occur in neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. The distribution of CMBs can give an insight to the nature and severity of the underlying small vessel disease, for example the lobar location is closely associated with cerebral amyloid angiopathy, while CMBs in the basal ganglia are more suggestive of hypertensive arteriosclerosis. This interview took place at the World Stroke Congress 2022 in Singapore.

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