48-year-old man presented with headache and extreme hypertension. Computed tomography showed diffuse brain stem hypodensity. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed diffuse brain stem vasogenic edema. Hypertensive brain stem encephalopathy is an uncommon manifestation of hypertensive encephalopathy, which classically occurs at parietooccipital white matter. Because of its atypical location, the diagnosis can be challenging. Moreover, the coexistence of hypertension and brain stem edema could also direct clinicians toward a diagnosis of ischemic infarction, leading to a completely contradictory treatment goal.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131.e5-131.e7
JournalAmerican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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