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IV Thrombolysis Aids Patients Dependent Before Their Stroke

Study finds favorable results among older adults who already had health problems

caregiver and seniors

FRIDAY, Jan. 22, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Intravenous thrombolysis (IVT) treatment might benefit stroke patients who needed help with daily living before their stroke, according to research published online Jan. 21 in Stroke.

The study included 7,430 patients in Europe who suffered an ischemic stroke and were treated with IVT. Before the stroke, 6.6 percent of them required daily living assistance.

During the three months after IVT treatment, previously dependent patients were nearly twice as likely to die as previously independent patients. But both groups had similar levels of intracranial hemorrhage and poor outcomes, the researchers found. However, among patients who survived the first three months, previously dependent patients were less likely to have poor outcomes than previously independent patients, after the researchers compensated for age and stroke severity.

"These findings prove that randomized-controlled IVT trials should be considered for such patients," lead author Henrik Gensicke, M.D., a neurologist at University Hospital Basel in Switzerland, said in a journal news release. "Concerns of higher complication rates from IVT treatment resulting in a less-than-favorable risk-benefit ratio for dependent patients might be unjustified and perhaps should be set aside to allow further study."

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