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New Research Buys Time For Stroke Patients

Time is one of the biggest factors in treating strokes. And a group of South Florida researchers are part of a team that’s found a way to buy stroke patients more time.

If a person has a stroke, the sooner they get treatment, the better their odds are of surviving and of healing without permanent disability. The general thinking has been that they’ve got a window of no more than six hours for a clot-removal surgery to be effective.

But people don’t always know when they’ve had a stroke. For example, when it happens while they’re sleeping. That complicates speedy treatment.

Researchers from the University of Miami and Jackson Memorial Hospital have tried a new way of using brain scans to identify patients who might still benefit from surgery up to 24 hours later.

They looked at more than 200 of these patients with similar kinds of clots who were identified late. About half of them got standard care. The other half got surgery.

The surgical patients had significantly better outcomes, and far less disability, three months later.

The study appears in this week’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

WLRN is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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