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First Automated Stroke Imaging Evaluation via Electronic Alberta Stroke Program Early CT Score in a Mobile Stroke Unit

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Abstract

Background: Recently, a mobile stroke unit (MSU) was shown to facilitate acute stroke treatment directly at the emergency site. The neuroradiological expertise of the MSU is improved by its ability to detect early ischemic damage via automatic electronic (e) evaluation of CT scans using a novel software program that calculates the electronic Alberta Stroke Program Early CT Score (e-ASPECTS). Methods: The feasibility of integrating e-ASPECTS into an ambulance was examined, and the clinical integration and utility of the software in 15 consecutive cases evaluated. Results: Implementation of e-ASPECTS onto the MSU and into the prehospital stroke management was feasible. The values of e-ASPECTS matched with the results of conventional neuroradiologic analysis by the MSU team. The potential benefits of e-ASPECTS were illustrated by three cases. In case 1, excluding early infarct signs supported the decision to directly perform prehospital thrombolysis. In case 2, in which stroke was caused by large-vessel occlusion, the high e-ASPECTS value supported the decision to initiate intra-arterial treatment and triage the patient to a comprehensive stroke center. In case 3, the e-ASPECTS value was 10, indicating the absence of early infarct signs despite pre-existing cerebral microangiopathy and macroangiopathy, a finding indicating the program's robustness against artefacts. Conclusions: This study on the integration of e-ASPECTS into the prehospital stroke management via a MSU showed for the first time that such integration is feasible, and aids both decision regarding the treatment option and the triage regarding the most appropriate target hospital.

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Most cited references 26

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A randomized trial of intraarterial treatment for acute ischemic stroke.

In patients with acute ischemic stroke caused by a proximal intracranial arterial occlusion, intraarterial treatment is highly effective for emergency revascularization. However, proof of a beneficial effect on functional outcome is lacking. We randomly assigned eligible patients to either intraarterial treatment plus usual care or usual care alone. Eligible patients had a proximal arterial occlusion in the anterior cerebral circulation that was confirmed on vessel imaging and that could be treated intraarterially within 6 hours after symptom onset. The primary outcome was the modified Rankin scale score at 90 days; this categorical scale measures functional outcome, with scores ranging from 0 (no symptoms) to 6 (death). The treatment effect was estimated with ordinal logistic regression as a common odds ratio, adjusted for prespecified prognostic factors. The adjusted common odds ratio measured the likelihood that intraarterial treatment would lead to lower modified Rankin scores, as compared with usual care alone (shift analysis). We enrolled 500 patients at 16 medical centers in The Netherlands (233 assigned to intraarterial treatment and 267 to usual care alone). The mean age was 65 years (range, 23 to 96), and 445 patients (89.0%) were treated with intravenous alteplase before randomization. Retrievable stents were used in 190 of the 233 patients (81.5%) assigned to intraarterial treatment. The adjusted common odds ratio was 1.67 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.21 to 2.30). There was an absolute difference of 13.5 percentage points (95% CI, 5.9 to 21.2) in the rate of functional independence (modified Rankin score, 0 to 2) in favor of the intervention (32.6% vs. 19.1%). There were no significant differences in mortality or the occurrence of symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage. In patients with acute ischemic stroke caused by a proximal intracranial occlusion of the anterior circulation, intraarterial treatment administered within 6 hours after stroke onset was effective and safe. (Funded by the Dutch Heart Foundation and others; MR CLEAN Netherlands Trial Registry number, NTR1804, and Current Controlled Trials number, ISRCTN10888758.).
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Randomized assessment of rapid endovascular treatment of ischemic stroke.

Among patients with a proximal vessel occlusion in the anterior circulation, 60 to 80% of patients die within 90 days after stroke onset or do not regain functional independence despite alteplase treatment. We evaluated rapid endovascular treatment in addition to standard care in patients with acute ischemic stroke with a small infarct core, a proximal intracranial arterial occlusion, and moderate-to-good collateral circulation. We randomly assigned participants to receive standard care (control group) or standard care plus endovascular treatment with the use of available thrombectomy devices (intervention group). Patients with a proximal intracranial occlusion in the anterior circulation were included up to 12 hours after symptom onset. Patients with a large infarct core or poor collateral circulation on computed tomography (CT) and CT angiography were excluded. Workflow times were measured against predetermined targets. The primary outcome was the score on the modified Rankin scale (range, 0 [no symptoms] to 6 [death]) at 90 days. A proportional odds model was used to calculate the common odds ratio as a measure of the likelihood that the intervention would lead to lower scores on the modified Rankin scale than would control care (shift analysis). The trial was stopped early because of efficacy. At 22 centers worldwide, 316 participants were enrolled, of whom 238 received intravenous alteplase (120 in the intervention group and 118 in the control group). In the intervention group, the median time from study CT of the head to first reperfusion was 84 minutes. The rate of functional independence (90-day modified Rankin score of 0 to 2) was increased with the intervention (53.0%, vs. 29.3% in the control group; P<0.001). The primary outcome favored the intervention (common odds ratio, 2.6; 95% confidence interval, 1.7 to 3.8; P<0.001), and the intervention was associated with reduced mortality (10.4%, vs. 19.0% in the control group; P=0.04). Symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage occurred in 3.6% of participants in intervention group and 2.7% of participants in control group (P=0.75). Among patients with acute ischemic stroke with a proximal vessel occlusion, a small infarct core, and moderate-to-good collateral circulation, rapid endovascular treatment improved functional outcomes and reduced mortality. (Funded by Covidien and others; ESCAPE ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01778335.).
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Stent-retriever thrombectomy after intravenous t-PA vs. t-PA alone in stroke.

Among patients with acute ischemic stroke due to occlusions in the proximal anterior intracranial circulation, less than 40% regain functional independence when treated with intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) alone. Thrombectomy with the use of a stent retriever, in addition to intravenous t-PA, increases reperfusion rates and may improve long-term functional outcome. We randomly assigned eligible patients with stroke who were receiving or had received intravenous t-PA to continue with t-PA alone (control group) or to undergo endovascular thrombectomy with the use of a stent retriever within 6 hours after symptom onset (intervention group). Patients had confirmed occlusions in the proximal anterior intracranial circulation and an absence of large ischemic-core lesions. The primary outcome was the severity of global disability at 90 days, as assessed by means of the modified Rankin scale (with scores ranging from 0 [no symptoms] to 6 [death]). The study was stopped early because of efficacy. At 39 centers, 196 patients underwent randomization (98 patients in each group). In the intervention group, the median time from qualifying imaging to groin puncture was 57 minutes, and the rate of substantial reperfusion at the end of the procedure was 88%. Thrombectomy with the stent retriever plus intravenous t-PA reduced disability at 90 days over the entire range of scores on the modified Rankin scale (P<0.001). The rate of functional independence (modified Rankin scale score, 0 to 2) was higher in the intervention group than in the control group (60% vs. 35%, P<0.001). There were no significant between-group differences in 90-day mortality (9% vs. 12%, P=0.50) or symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (0% vs. 3%, P=0.12). In patients receiving intravenous t-PA for acute ischemic stroke due to occlusions in the proximal anterior intracranial circulation, thrombectomy with a stent retriever within 6 hours after onset improved functional outcomes at 90 days. (Funded by Covidien; SWIFT PRIME ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01657461.).

Author and article information

Affiliations
aDepartment of Neuroscience, Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford, Essex, and bBrainomix Limited, Summertown, Oxford, UK; cDepartment of Neurology, and dInstitute of Neuroradiology, Saarland University Medical Center, Homburg, Germany
Journal
CED
Cerebrovasc Dis
10.1159/issn.1015-9770
Cerebrovascular Diseases
Cerebrovasc Dis
S. Karger AG (Basel, Switzerland karger@123456karger.com http://www.karger.com )
1015-9770
1421-9786
November 2016
16 June 2016
: 42
: 5-6
: 332-338
© 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel

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Figures: 1, References: 35, Pages: 7
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