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Determinants of outcome in patients eligible for thrombolysis for ischemic stroke

Authors Valeria Caso, Maurizio Paciaroni, Michele Venti, Francesco Palmerini, Giorgio Silvestrelli, et al

Published 15 November 2007 Volume 2007:3(5) Pages 749—754

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Valeria Caso, Maurizio Paciaroni, Michele Venti, Francesco Palmerini, Giorgio Silvestrelli, Paolo Milia, Sergio Biagini, Giancarlo Agnelli

Stroke Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, Ospedale Silvestrini Perugia, Italy

Objectives: Eligibility criteria for thrombolysis in ischemic stroke have been clearly defined. However, not all eligible patients benefit from this treatment. This study aimed to assess the determinants for clinical outcome in consecutive, eligible patients with ischemic stroke treated with thrombolysis in a single-center study.

Methods: Consecutive patients with ischemic stroke were treated with tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) following the established eligibility National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and European Stroke Initiative (EUSI) criteria. Risk factors including blood pressure and pre-treatment glycemia were properly managed. Death and disability at 3 months were the study outcomes. Disability was evaluated by the Rankin-scale. Favorable outcome was defined as 0–2 and adverse outcome as 3–6 including death.

Results: Seventy-eight patients were included in the study in a single stroke unit. The mean age was 70.9 ± 13.2 years (range 36–94). Follow-up at 3 months was completed in 73 patients. A favorable outcome was observed in 37 patients (50%) and adverse outcome in 36 (36%). Nine patients (12.3%) died within 3 months. The presence of an occluded carotid artery was a strong predictor for adverse outcome (p > 0.0001). A low NIH Stroke Scale-Score (NIHSS) at admission was a associated with a favorable outcome, while history of diabetes mellitus led to an unfavorable outcome.

Conclusion: Among patients eligible for thrombolysis, many do not benefit from this treatment. These include patients with carotid occlusion and diabetes.

Keywords: thrombolysis, stroke, outcome, diabetes, carotid artery occlusion

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