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Cognitive Impairment following Transient Ischemic Attack and Minor Stroke Open Access


Other title
cognitive impairment
minor stroke
transient ischemic attack
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Sivakumar, Leka
Supervisor and department
Butcher, Ken (Neurology)
Examining committee member and department
Camicioli, Richard (Neurology)
Beaulieau, Christian (Biomedical Engineering)
Jeerakathil, Thomas (Neurology)
Centre for Neuroscience

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
Background: Ischemic stroke is associated with cognitive impairment, but the acute cognitive sequelae of transient ischemic attack (TIA) and minor stroke is unknown. We hypothesized that transient cognitive impairment can be predicted by diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) lesion volume. Methods: TIA/minor stroke patients (NIH Stroke Scale ≤ 3) underwent Montreal Cognitive Assessment, Mini-Mental Status Examination and MRI at baseline, days 7 and 30. Results: One hundred patients were included. MoCA detected cognitive impairment in 54% of patients at baseline. Recall deficits resolved, while deficits in language were persistent. WMH volumes were inversely predictive of MoCA scores after 30 days (β=-0.519, p<0.0001). Patients with persisting deficits were more likely to have frontal cortical lesions (86%, p=0.038) and higher WMH volumes (9.56mL, p=0.04). Conclusions: TIA/minor stroke patients have evidence of temporary acute cognitive impairment. Deficits are correlated with chronic WMH load. Temporary cognitive deficits should be considered in the management of TIA/minor stroke.
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