Insufficient vascular reserve after an ischemic stroke may induce biochemical cascades that subsequently deteriorate the blood-brain barrier (BBB) function. However, the direct relationship between poor cerebral blood volume (CBV) restoration and BBB disruption has not been examined in acute stroke. To quantify BBB integrity at acute stages of transient stroke, in particular for cases in which extravasation of the standard contrast agent (Gd-DTPA) is not observed, we adopted the water exchange index (WEI), a novel magnetic resonance image-derived parameter to estimate the water permeability across the BBB. The apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) and R2 relaxation rate constant were also measured for outlining the tissue abnormality, while fractional CBV and WEI were quantified for assessing vascular alterations. The significantly decreased ADC and R2 in the ischemic cortices did not correlate with the changes in CBV or WEI. In contrast, a strong negative correlation between the ipsilesional WEI and CBV was found, in which stroke mice were clustered into two groups: (1) high WEI and low CBV and (2) normal WEI and CBV. The low CBV observed for mice with a disrupted BBB, characterized by a high WEI, indicates the importance of CBV restoration for maintaining BBB stability in acute stroke.