Occult Anterograde Flow Is an Under-Recognized But Crucial Predictor of Early Recanalization With Intravenous Tissue-Type Plasminogen Activator
Background and Purpose—Thrombolysis depends on the ability of blood and thrombolytic agents to permeate thrombus. We devise a novel technique to quantify blood permeating through thrombi and determine whether this parameter predicts early recanalization with intravenous tissue-type plasminogen activator.
Methods—Intravenous tissue-type plasminogen activator–treated patients with stroke and complete occlusion on computed tomographic angiography were analyzed using perfusion computed tomography and a delay insensitive algorithm. We generated maps that measure delay in arrival time of contrast within the intracranial arterial tree (T0 maps). A positive sloped regression line of T0 values measured along artery silhouette distal to thrombus was defined as marker of permeable thrombus (occult anterograde flow). Median T0 values at proximal and distal thrombus interface were measured. Early recanalization was assessed on first angiography of subsequent intra-arterial procedure or on a 4-hour computed tomographic angiography.
Results—Of 66 patients, occult anterograde flow was detected in 17 (25.8%). Early recanalization was more in patients with occult anterograde flow versus not (66.7 versus 29.7%; P=0.031). Median T0 value (in s) at distal thrombus interface (1.5 versus 3.8; P=0.006) and difference in median T0 value between proximal and distal thrombus interface (1.3 versus 3.7; P=0.014) were less in early recanalizers versus in nonrecanalizers. In multivariable analysis, patients with occult anterograde flow and T0 value difference between proximal and distal thrombus interface ≤2 s recanalized most (71.4%; odds ratio, 12.15; 95% confidence interval, 2.05–71.91), whereas patients with retrograde flow and T0 value difference >2 s recanalized least (25.9%; odds ratio, 1).
Conclusions—Occult anterograde flow through thrombus can be assessed by perfusion computed tomography T0 maps and predicts early recanalization with intravenous tissue-type plasminogen activator robustly.
- Received December 31, 2014.
- Revision received January 23, 2015.
- Accepted January 26, 2015.
- © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.