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Images in Neurology
June 2007

Transient Isolated Vertigo Secondary to an Acute Stroke of the Cerebellar Nodulus

Arch Neurol. 2007;64(6):897-898. doi:10.1001/archneur.64.6.897

An 88-year-old woman with diabetes and hypertension presented to the emergency department with acute onset of severe nonpositional vertigo accompanied by nausea and vomiting. There were no other posterior circulation symptoms. Within hours her vertigo resolved. While symptomatic, her examination findings were notable only for poor smooth pursuit, right-beating gaze evoked nystagmus, and a mildly unsteady gait. There was no dysmetria or truncal ataxia. Though suggestive of a peripheral vestibulopathy, her vascular risk factors prompted a brain magnetic resonance imaging scan. This demonstrated restricted diffusion in the cerebellar nodulus, consistent with an acute infarction (Figure, A and B). Mild diffuse irregularities of the anterior and posterior circulation were demonstrated on intracranial MRA (magnetic resonance angiography). A drop out of signal on the time-of-flight MRA was seen in the distal left vertebral artery, suggestive of a focal stenosis; no flow-related enhancement was seen in the left posterior inferior cerebellar artery (Figure, D).

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