Intercavernous portion of internal carotid artery occlusion resulting from snowboarding
Sudiptamohan Mukhopadhyay1, Awen Iorwerth2
1Department of Orthopaedics, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK; 2Department of Orthopaedics, Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Wales, UK
Abstract: A 33-year-old gentleman who was otherwise fit and healthy suffered repetitive low impact head injuries while snowboarding in Austria over a period of one week. During the fall he had several hyperextension injuries and presented with headache, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness (felt ‘drunk’ on Friday night despite not being drunk), diplopia, abnormal pupillary signs. A Horner’s syndrome was diagnosed and on investigation, the left intercavernous portion of internal carotid artery (ICA) was found to be thrombosed. The symptoms gradually settled after conservative treatment for a month. Blunt head trauma is a recognized cause of carotid dissection and thrombosis and many neuromechanics studies have attempted to calculate the wall shear stress involved. Physicians treating snowboarders should be aware of the condition and should look for Horner’s syndrome and consider the possibility of carotid occlusion. With a thorough PubMed, Ovid, EMBASE search using ‘snowboarding’, ‘carotid dissection’, ‘Horner’s syndrome’ no such case was found to be reported. Proper training for such sport activities is essential to avoid serious consequences.
Keywords: snowboarding, carotid dissection, Horner’s syndrome
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