Visual symptoms in acute stroke - A systematic review of observational studies

Katrine Sofie Helboe, Heidi Shil Eddelien, Christina Kruuse*

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde


OBJECTIVE: Atypical symptoms of stroke, such as non-specific visual symptoms, are a challenging aspect of acute stroke diagnostics. Among patients evaluated for stroke in the Emergency Department, 2-28% present with stroke chameleons, and 30-43% with stroke mimics. We aimed to identify the type of visual symptoms present in typical strokes, stroke mimics, and stroke chameleons.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: By use of Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis we searched PubMed and Embase for studies with reports of acute visual symptoms in typical strokes vs mimics or chameleons (PROSPERO protocol, ID CRD42022364749). Risk of bias was assessed by The Critical Appraisal Skills Program.

RESULTS: Thirteen papers were included, comprising data from 9248 patients evaluated for stroke. Compared to mimics, visual symptoms in stroke presented more frequently as hemianopia (28.2% vs 4.8%, 7,4% vs 2.3%, 22% vs 0%), visual loss (11.6% vs 1.8%), visual field defect (11.6% vs 4%, 24% vs 2%, 19% vs 1.7%), eye movement disorder (19.4% vs 6.4%), eye deviation (9.6% vs 0.9%), gaze palsy (32.1% vs 8.6%), oculomotor disturbance (37% vs 0%), and visual inattention (17.5% vs 4%). Compared to strokes, mimics more often presented "non-systematized visual trouble" (10% vs 3%) and blurred vision (22% vs 5%), whereas "visual disturbance" was reported more often in stroke chameleons than in typical strokes (10% vs 3%).

CONCLUSION: Detailed reports of visual symptoms were lacking in most studies, however blurred vision and "non-systematized visual trouble" were more frequent in mimics, "visual disturbance" in stroke chameleons, and negative visual symptoms such as visual field defects in typical strokes. A more systematic and detailed approach to visual symptoms may facilitate acute stroke recognition in patients with visual symptoms.

TidsskriftClinical Neurology and Neurosurgery
Sider (fra-til)107749
StatusUdgivet - jun. 2023


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