The study of 500 patients in Europe showed patients who had a clot-induced stroke treated with a clot-removing device demonstrated a clinically significant increase in functional independence three months following treatment compared to patients treated with a clot-dissolving drug only, which is the current standard of care at most hospitals in the United States.
According to the study, 32.6% of patients who received interventional endovascular treatment to remove large clots functioned independently 90 days after their strokes compared to 19.1% who received intravenous tPA, a clot-dissolving drug.
“This landmark trial is likely to change the standard of care for many stroke patients in the future,” said Alan Boulos, M.D., endovascular neurosurgeon and chief of the department of neurosurgery at Albany Med.
“Albany Med is proud to be a local leader in this treatment approach, which has dramatically improved our ability to safely and quickly open vessels in the brain and allow significantly better outcomes for many stroke patients. We have performed this type of procedure since 2002 and have developed the imaging, technology, nursing, technician, and physician expertise to manage these complicated patients at all times of the day or night.”
Albany Med surgeons began using the “Solitaire” clot-removal system in March of 2012 as soon as it was approved by the FDA, and remain the only surgeons in the region to use the device. Over the last three years, the Albany Med neurosurgery team has been involved with a separate study on this innovative treatment. This study has been halted based on the compelling evidence presented by the European study. This data as well as other studies from Canada and Australia will be presented at the International Stroke Conference on February 11, 2015.
Solitaire is a small, stent-like tube that is threaded to the brain using a catheter, where it is opened and able to “grab” a clot that is inhibiting blood flow (an ischemic stroke).
Ischemic stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is blocked by a clot. According to the American Heart Association, stroke is the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. and is a leading cause of long-term disability.
The MR CLEAN study (Multicenter Randomized Clinical Trial of Endovascular Treatment for Acute Ischemic Stroke) was published in the December 17, 2014 issue of the NEJM.
Albany Medical Center, northeastern New York’s only academic health sciences center, is one of the largest private employers in the Capital Region. It incorporates the 734-bed Albany Medical Center Hospital, which offers the widest range of medical and surgical services in the region, and the Albany Medical College, which trains the next generation of doctors, scientists and other healthcare professionals, and also includes a biomedical research enterprise and the region’s largest physicians practice with more than 400 doctors. Albany Medical Center works with dozens of community partners to improve the region’s health and quality of life. For more information: www.amc.edu or www.facebook.com/albanymedicalcenter.
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