Transcranial doppler correlation with cerebral angiography in sickle cell disease

Robert J. Adams, Fenwick T. Nichols, Ramon Figueroa, Virgil McKie, Thomas Lott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: Cerebral infarction in sickle cell disease is associated with arterial narrowing or occlusions of intracranial arteries. Primary stroke prevention would be feasible if a noninvasive screening test could be developed to detect intracranial disease in patients before symptoms develop. Methods: To determine the sensitivity and specificity of transcranial Doppler in detecting significant (≥50% lumen diameter reduction) intracranial arterial lesions, we compared transcranial Doppler and cerebral angiography in a primarily young, symptomatic group of 33 patients (18 males and 15 females) with sickle cell disease. Results: From a total of 34 examinations, transcranial Doppler detected significant abnormalities in 26 of 29 (sensitivity 90%, specificity 100%). Five were normal by both techniques. The transorbital examination detected abnormalities in two patients whose studies were otherwise unremarkable. Conclusions: Transcranial Doppler is sensitive and specific for the detection of arterial vasculopathy of sickle cell disease. Screening should include a transorbital examination of the distal internal carotid artery as well as examination using the transtemporal approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1073-1077
Number of pages5
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1992


  • Anemia
  • Cerebral infarction
  • Child
  • Sickle cell
  • Ultrasonics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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