Should the Management of Embolic Stroke in the Elderly Be Changed if They Also Have COVID-19?
KeywordsEmbolism, stroke, COVID-19, atrial fibrillation
Introduction: A strong association between stroke and atrial fibrillation (AF) has been demonstrated. Anticoagulation for the prevention of stroke in high-risk patients has the benefit of improving the life expectancy, quality of life, autonomy and social functioning of the patient. The COVID-19 pandemic poses challenges for stroke patients because of the association between SARS-CoV-2 infection and thromboembolic risk.
Case description: We describe the case of an 84-year-old female patient admitted due to an embolic stroke and non-anticoagulated AF. Her admission symptoms were sensory-motor aphasia and severe right limb paresis with an NIHSS score of 24. The diagnosis of embolic stroke (namely, total anterior circulation infarct; TACI) was made. Her stroke was extensive so she was not started on anticoagulation. During hospitalization, new embolic events occurred and a concomitant diagnosis of COVID-19 was made with progressive respiratory dysfunction followed by multiorgan failure. The patient died despite appropriate treatment.
Discussion: The prognosis of elderly patients with cardioembolic stroke depends on anticoagulation administration. The NIHSS score on admission of our patient meant anticoagulation therapy was not appropriate. The diagnosis of COVID-19 contributed to the patient’s death.
Issue: Vol 7 No 6 (view)