We describe the long-term follow up of infants after neonatal stroke of the middle cerebral artery (MCA). Stroke was diagnosed by CT scan in eight full-term neonates. Three dimensional (volume) magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) is a noninvasive technique that images the arterial vessels without contrast agents. All patients, aged from 1.5 to 8.4 years, were investigated by MRI and MRA and by neuropsychological tests. Cognitive development was investigated by intelligence tests, tests of visual perception, motor and language development. Out of the eight patients, seven had a retarded mental and motor development, and 50% of the children were treated for epilepsy. Seven patients had a spastic hemiparesis. Seven out of eight children showed major cognitive deficits. In all patients, MRI revealed clear parenchymal defects with variable distribution patterns. MRA studies showed abnormalities corresponding to the expected vascular distribution. Children with complications at delivery, with seizures, and an interruption of the main stem of MCA as demonstrated on MRA had the least favourable long-term follow up prognosis with severe cognitive delays.
Neonatal strokeMagnetic resonance imagingMagnetic resonance angiographyNeuropsychological testsLong-term follow up