Quick Stroke Treatment Can Save Lives
If you’re having a stroke, it’s critical that you get medical attention right away. Immediate treatment may minimize the long-term effects of a stroke and even prevent death. Thanks to recent advances, stroke treatments and survival rates have improved greatly over the last decade.
Stroke Treatment: Alteplase IV r-tPA, the Gold Standard
A stroke occurs when a vessel in the brain is blocked by a blood clot or ruptures. A stroke caused by a clot is called an ischemic stroke, making up about 85 percent of all strokes in the United States.
The only FDA-approved treatment for ischemic strokes is Alteplase IV r-tPA, also known as tissue plasminogen activator. Alteplase IV r-tPA works by dissolving the clot and improving blood flow. If administered within three hours (and up to four-and-a-half hours in certain eligible patients), Alteplase IV r-tPA may improve the chances of recovering from a stroke.
Other Stroke Treatment Options
An endovascular procedure is a treatment to remove the clot by sending a catheter to the site of the blocked blood vessel in the brain. Patients must meet certain criteria to be eligible.
Sometimes these procedures involve tPA being administered directly into the blood clot (called intra-arterial treatment) to help dissolve the blockage. In other procedures, the doctor may attempt to remove the clot. Research is ongoing to determine the best clinical protocols for endovascular procedures.