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Purpose of review: To facilitate and standardize the diagnosis of cerebrovascular conditions in childhood, particularly in the field of arterial ischemic diseases.

Recent findings: Progress in diagnostic techniques in the past decade have led to newly established etiologies for childhood stroke, most of which represent some form of vascular pathology. These advances must be integrated into a modern nomenclature system with revised definitions of stroke and arterial wall diseases-arteriopathies-in childhood.

Summary: This nomenclature system is intended to facilitate and enhance clinical research in childhood stroke, particularly multicenter collaborative studies.

(C) 2004 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.