Indexed on: 30 May '09Published on: 30 May '09Published in: Stroke; a journal of cerebral circulation
Little is known about the gender-specific manifestations of cerebral venous and sinus thrombosis, a disease that is much more common in women than men.We used data of the International Study on Cerebral Vein and Dural sinus Thrombosis (ISCVT), a multicenter prospective observational study, to analyze gender-specific differences in clinical presentation, etiology, and outcome of cerebral venous thrombosis.Four hundred sixty-five of a total of 624 patients were women (75%). Women were significantly younger, had less often a chronic onset of symptoms, and had more often headache at presentation. There were no gender differences in ancillary investigations or treatment. A gender-specific risk factor (oral contraceptives, pregnancy, puerperium, and hormonal replacement therapy) was present in 65% of women. Women had a better prognosis than men (complete recovery 81% versus 71%l P=0.01), which was entirely due to a better outcome in female patients with gender-specific risk factors. Women without gender-specific risk factors are similar to men in clinical presentation, risk factor profile, and outcome. Logistic regression analysis confirmed that the absence of gender-specific risk factors is a strong and independent predictor of poor outcome in women with sinus thrombosis (OR, 3.7; CI, 1.9 to 7.4).Our study identified important differences between women and men in presentation, course, and risk factors of cerebral venous and sinus thrombosis and showed that women with a gender-specific risk factor have a much better prognosis than other patients.