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Case Reports in Medicine
Volume 2011, Article ID 503758, 3 pages
Case Report

Intravenous Thrombolysis in Ischemic Stroke Patients with Intracranial Neoplasms: Two Cases and a Literature Review

Stroke Center and Department of Neurosciences, University of California San Diego, Medical Offices North, 200 West Arbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92103, USA

Received 15 July 2011; Accepted 11 August 2011

Academic Editor: Mark E. Shaffrey

Copyright © 2011 William Neil and Bruce Ovbiagele. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Based on exclusion criteria in the landmark NINDS-rtPA trial, current expert consensus guidelines preclude the use of intravenous recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (IV rtPA) in acute ischemic stroke (AIS) patients with intracranial neoplasm. There are only 3 published cases of administration of IV rtPA to AIS patients with intracranial neoplasms in the literature. Two of these published cases involved malignant brain parenchymal lesions discovered only after rtPA was inadvertently given, and one of these cases was associated with hemorrhage within the tumor. In this paper, we report two cases of administration of IV rtPA in AIS patients with intracranial neoplasms observed on neuroimaging prior to IV rtPA administration. In both cases, the tumor was outside of the brain parenchyma. The first case was an acoustic schwannoma and the second a falcine meningioma. Neither case was associated with intratumoral hemorrhage as of at least one week following IV rtPA treatment. More published cases are definitely warranted, but our experience with these two cases suggests that administration of IV rtPA to AIS patients in the presence of extraparenchymal brain tumors may not necessarily precipitate intra-tumoral bleeding and thereby worsen clinical outcomes.