The effects of hemodynamic lag on functional connectivity and behavior after stroke

Joshua S. Siegel, Abraham Z. Snyder, Lenny Ramsey, Gordon L. Shulman, Maurizio Corbetta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


Stroke disrupts the brain's vascular supply, not only within but also outside areas of infarction. We investigated temporal delays (lag) in resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging signals in 130 stroke patients scanned two weeks, three months and 12 months post stroke onset. Thirty controls were scanned twice at an interval of three months. Hemodynamic lag was determined using cross-correlation with the global gray matter signal. Behavioral performance in multiple domains was assessed in all patients. Regional cerebral blood flow and carotid patency were assessed in subsets of the cohort using arterial spin labeling and carotid Doppler ultrasonography. Significant hemodynamic lag was observed in 30% of stroke patients sub-acutely. Approximately 10% of patients showed lag at one-year post-stroke. Hemodynamic lag corresponded to gross aberrancy in functional connectivity measures, performance deficits in multiple domains and local and global perfusion deficits. Correcting for lag partially normalized abnormalities in measured functional connectivity. Yet post-stroke FC-behavior relationships in the motor and attention systems persisted even after hemodynamic delays were corrected. Resting state fMRI can reliably identify areas of hemodynamic delay following stroke. Our data reveal that hemodynamic delay is common sub-acutely, alters functional connectivity, and may be of clinical importance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2162-2176
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016


  • Acute stroke
  • brain ischemia
  • cerebral blood flow
  • cerebral hemodynamics
  • cognitive impairment
  • functional MRI


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