Thursday, June 10, 2010

Couple of news items regarding clot-busting drug

New 4.5-hour window for tPA in stroke boosts number of patients treated, causes no new delays
...[T]he increase did not appear to come at the expense of the number of patients treated in the earlier period up to 3 hours after onset, something investigators had feared would happen once physicians knew they had more time to decide whether to treat.

Patients treated later had similar functional outcomes to the earlier window, the researchers found; there was a small increase in symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) and death but not enough to prevent use of the treatment, the researchers conclude.
Clot buster more critical for female stroke victims
"Women need to be treated for stroke as soon as possible. We found that women who weren't treated had a worse quality of life after stroke than men. However, the good news is that women who were treated responded just as well as men to the treatment," study author Dr. Michael D. Hill, of the University of Calgary in Canada, said in a news release from the journal's publisher.

Hill and his colleagues analyzed data on more than 2,100 stroke patients. Of the 232 patients treated with tPA within three hours after their stroke, 44 percent were women.

Only 58 percent of women who didn't receive tPA had a good outcome six months after their stroke, compared with 70 percent of men who weren't given the drug. Women and men treated with tPA after their stroke had similar outcomes.
(Image from the National Institutes of Health)

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