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Clot removal up to 24 hours after stroke onset results in reduction in disability

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Standard guidelines for stroke treatment currently suggest clot removal only within six hours of stroke onset. But research presented recently at the European Stroke Organization Conference in Prague shows that clot removal up to 24 hours after stroke led to significantly reduced disability for some patients.

“These results offer hope for thousands of stroke patients worldwide who arrive at the hospital outside the six-hour treatment window,” says co-principal investigator Raul Nogueira, MD, professor of neurology, neurosurgery and radiology at Emory University School of Medicine and director of neuroendovascular service and neurocritical care service at the Marcus Stroke & Neuroscience Center at Grady Memorial Hospital.

The multi-center study, known as the DAWN trial, studied 206 stroke patients who randomly received either endovascular clot removal therapy or standard medical therapy of clot-busting medication. Almost half of the patients (48.6 percent) who had clot removal showed a considerable decrease in disability, meaning they were independent in activities of daily living 90 days after treatment. Only 13.1 percent of the medication group had a similar decrease.

According to co-principal investigator Tudor Jovin, MD, director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Stroke Institute, even though the study shows patients who arrive in the late time window will have significantly reduced disability with clot removal, it is still important for patients to be rushed to the hospital as soon as possible after a stroke.

Stryker, a medical technology company that manufactures the clot removal device used in the study, sponsored the DAWN trial.

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