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Background. Disease of the major vessels in the neck can disrupt autoregulation and lead to changes in the cerebral blood flow and cerebral autoregulation. These changes can be reflected by means of cerebral oxygen saturation. Methods. We measured cerebral oxygen saturation in 20 patients with atherosclerotic disease of the carotid and vertebral arteries and compared results with 10 normal subjects. Saturation was measured using a noninvasive near-infrared device, the transcranial cerebral oximeter. Results. There were marked decreases in cerebral oxygen saturation in patients with carotid-vertebral artery disease when the position of the patient was changed, from supine to erect. Conclusion. Changes in regional cerebral oxygen saturation inpatients with carotid-vertebral artery disease may reflect disruption of cerebral autoregulation.
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Accepted: December 13, 1996
Received: November 27, 1995
© 1997 National Stroke Division. Published by Elsevier Inc.