Travel to high altitude and the incumbent exposure to hypobaric hypoxia leads to a prothrombotic state. This may increase the likelihood of thromboembolic events, including stroke, in otherwise healthy individuals. While there have been sporadic anecdotal reports of ‘stroke-like’ syndromes at high altitude for over 100 years, there are surprisingly few detailed reports supported by imaging.
This report describes a case of posterior circulation infarct thought to be due to a paradoxical embolus through a patent foramen ovale. The relationship between high-altitude physiology, increased incidence of thromboembolism and the significance of patent foramen are discussed in the report.
- ALTITUDE MEDICINE
- Received October 19, 2014.
- Revision received January 16, 2015.
- Accepted January 19, 2015.
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