, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 261-262
Date: 10 Aug 2010

Cardiac Rupture After Intravenous t-PA Administration in Acute Ischemic Stroke

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Abstract

Background

Ventricular free wall rupture is a fatal complication of myocardial infarction (MI). Although described in MI patients who receive thrombolytic therapy, this complication is not well known in ischemic stroke patients who receive intravenous (IV) t-PA.

Methods

Case report.

Results

We present a 93-year-old woman with an acute onset of a right middle cerebral artery syndrome in the setting of subacute MI. IV t-PA was administered and she subsequently developed asystolic arrest and died. Autopsy showed subacute MI, hemopericardium, and rupture of the left ventricle.

Conclusions

This case illustrates a fatal cardiac complication of IV thrombolytic therapy for stroke. The speculated mechanism is hemorrhage into the infarcted myocardium.