What blood vessels can be affected by an ischemic stroke?

The following blood vessels can be affected by ischemic stroke:
  • Large-artery atherothrombotic strokes usually occur at one of four locations: the origin of the internal carotid artery, the siphon portion of the internal carotid artery, the middle cerebral artery stem, or the junction of the distal vertebral arteries and the basilar artery.
  • Small-vessel lacunar strokes typically result from obstruction of a single blood vessel that branches off from the circle of Willis, the middle cerebral artery stem, the basilar artery, or the distal vertebral arteries.
  • Embolic strokes are caused when a blood clot obstructs a major blood vessel at the base of the brain, such as the basilar artery or the middle cerebral artery stem.
  • Dissection strokes occur after a large artery outside the brain, such as the carotid or vertebral artery, tears.

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