Objective: Human cerebrovasculature has not been quantified in volume, length, and vascular-brain relationships. We investigated this using imaging.
Methods: From 0.5-mm3 7T and 320-row CT acquisitions, 6 arterial and 4 venous systems were reconstructed, measured, and analyzed.
Results: The ratio of the volume of arterial to venous system is approximately 1:3. The ratio of the volume of dural sinuses to vasculature is 1:2. The ratio of the posterior (PCA) to anterior (ACA) to middle cerebral artery (MCA) is 1:2:4 in volume and length. Ratios of left to right vessels are 1:1 for arteries and veins. Ratios of branching frequency for the ACA, MCA, and PCA are 1:1:1. The branching frequency ratio for superficial to deep veins is 1:2. The MCA occupies 1/2 of arterial length and 1/4 of vascular length. The ratio of the length of superficial to deep veins is 1:1 and each is equal to 1/4 of the vascular length. The ratio of cerebrovasculature to brain volume is 2.5%.
Conclusions: Despite its enormous complexity, cerebrovasculature is characterized by 4 approximate proportions, 1:1, 1:2, 1:3, 1:4, and their combinations, 1:1:1 and 1:2:4.