After occlusion of flow in an artery, further ischaemic episodes are not expected due to lack of a flow conduit to carry the embolus. In the carotid stump syndrome, ongoing ischaemic events may continue due to collateral flow via the external carotid artery. We report two patients presenting with posterior circulation strokes after documented vertebral artery occlusion, due to a vertebral stump syndrome. Their presentation, the pathophysiology of cervico-vertebral anastomoses and management are described.
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Competing interests: None declared.