Abstract 19: Reducing Time to Intra-Arterial Therapy in Acute Ischemic Stroke
Background: Time to recanalization is known to predict clinical outcome in acute ischemic stroke (AIS) patients with large vessel occlusion (LVO). Unlike for IV tPA, there is no established goal time to intra-arterial therapy (IAT), resulting in potential delays and worse outcomes. We assessed the effect of a quality improvement (QI) initiative on reducing door-to-angio suite arrival times modeled after similar efforts in the AHA Target Stroke program.
Methods: We examined two cohorts: pre- and post-implementation of a protocol for early alert of the neurointerventional radiology (NIR) team based on patient presentation within the treatment window (anterior circulation 8 hours, posterior circulation 24 hours) and clinical suspicion for LVO (NIHSS >10). We compared time from patient arrival to completion of imaging and arrival into the angio suite by Wilcoxon and multivariable linear regression.
Results: Seventy one patients (48 pre- vs. 23 post-QI) with mean age of 68 years (36 (51%) male; median NIHSS 16, IQR 14-20) were included. Of these, 37 (52%) presented during work hours (weekdays 6am to 6pm). Post-QI, the NIR team was alerted early in 83% of cases. Overall QI impact was a reduction in absolute median door-to-suite time of 48 minutes (124 vs. 76 min, p<0.0001) (Figure). Among time sub-intervals, the time from last imaging acquisition to suite arrival has decreased significantly (median 55 vs. 30 min, p=0.004) post-QI. Use of the early alert protocol and patient arrival during work hours were the only independent predictors of shorter door-to-suite times.
Conclusions: Early notification of the NIR team resulted in a major reduction in time from door-to-angio suite arrival of ~50 minutes. This time savings was achieved through parallel work flow of the multidisciplinary teams during AIS evaluation. As the certification of Comprehensive Stroke Centers commences, such QI initiatives aimed at improving rapid delivery of time-sensitive therapies will be critical.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.