I hope everyone had a delightful Thanksgiving day or Turkey Day if you are a part of my family. You may have noticed that some of the other authors have been filling my voids with some excellent posts. We have quite a few consistent readers, and I hope that this blog has become a reliable educational resource. As always, I am overly busy, but I plan on writing a lot more than I have recently. The ECG tutorial will continue, I promise.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Tissue-type plasminogen activator is the only pharmacological treatment approved for acute ischemic strokes but is administered to less than 5% of the patients. Excessive prehospital and in-hospital delays and lack of stroke center coverage are major issues that negatively impact stroke care. New strategies are being developed and evaluated to increase the number of tissue-type plasminogen activator-treated patients. RECENT FINDINGS: Factors that limit rapid access to acute stroke care are discussed, including those influencing time intervals from stroke onset to hospital admission. We also describe strategies that hold promise to reduce prehospital delays and increase access to acute stroke treatment. SUMMARY: The shortening of prehospital delays requires education of patients and health professionals and optimization of transport strategies. Future developments may include video conferencing offering telestroke expertise, strategies (i.e. therapeutic interventions) that might help to treat acute stroke patients with tissue-type plasminogen activator, and prehospital selection of candidates for endovascular therapies.
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