Table 1

 Suggested criteria for eligibility for interventional PFO closure: 1–4 required

1. Preceding ischaemic neurologic event with probable embolic aetiology
2. Age under 60 years and absence of overt atherosclerotic disease (for example, history of myocardial infarction) or more than one atherosclerotic risk factor
3. Exclusion of other cardiac (for example, atrial fibrillation, endocarditis, tumour) or vascular (carotid stenosis, spontaneous carotid or vertebral dissection, aortic atheromatosis) embolic sources
4. PFO with more than minimal inducible or spontaneous right-to-left shunt, in particular in the presence of an atrial septal aneurysm
5. Contraindications against or unwillingness to undergo anticoagulation