Adjunctive and Alternative Approaches to Current Reperfusion Therapy
Background and Purpose—Current ischemic stroke reperfusion therapy consists of intravenous thrombolysis given in eligible patients after review of a noncontrast CT scan and a time-based window of opportunity. Rapid clot lysis has a strong association with clinical improvement but remains incomplete in many patients. This review appraises novel adjunctive or alternative approaches to current reperfusion strategies being tested in all trial phases.
Summary of Review—Alternative approaches to current reperfusion therapy can be separated into 4 main categories: (1) combinatory approaches with other drugs or devices; (2) novel systemic thrombolytic agents; (3) endovascular medical or mechanical reperfusion treatments; and (4) noninvasive or minimally invasive methods to augment cerebral blood flow and alleviate intracranial blood flow steal.
Conclusions—Reperfusion treatments must be provided as fast as possible in patients most likely to benefit. Patients who fail to rapidly reperfuse may benefit from other strategies that maintain collateral flow or protect tissue at risk.
- Received June 29, 2011.
- Revision received October 26, 2011.
- Accepted October 27, 2011.
- © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.