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Strokes: mimics and chameleons
  1. Peter M Fernandes1,
  2. William N Whiteley2,
  3. Simon R Hart3,
  4. Rustam Al-Shahi Salman4
  1. 1Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, UK
  2. 2Division of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Edinburgh, UK
  3. 3Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, UK
  4. 4Division of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Peter M Fernandes, Ward 31, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh; peterfernandes{at}nhs.net

Abstract

Diagnosing stroke is not always straightforward. Stroke mimics such as Todd's paresis or hemiplegic migraine account for between a fifth and a quarter of suspected strokes (depending on the setting in which they are assessed). Stroke chameleons can arise when the tempo of symptom onset is not apoplectic or if the loss of function is not clearly consistent with a deficit within an arterial territory. Thrombolysis and secondary prevention have much to offer patients with stroke chameleons, though those with stroke mimics may be harmed by these treatments and have more to gain from other therapies.

  • Stroke
  • Cerebrovascular Disease
  • Cerebrovascular
  • Clinical Neurology

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