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Cerebrovasc Dis. 2009;28(4):384-90. doi: 10.1159/000235625. Epub 2009 Aug 22.

Impact of hyperlipidemia and statins on ischemic stroke outcomes after intra-arterial fibrinolysis and percutaneous mechanical embolectomy.

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Department of Neurology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, California 90095, USA.



Endovascular recanalization therapies are an increasingly employed treatment strategy in acute cerebral ischemia. The determinants of the final clinical outcome after endovascular treatment have been understudied. We investigated the effects of hyperlipidemia and statins on acute ischemic stroke outcomes after endovascular procedures.


An inquiry of a prospectively maintained stroke registry was conducted. Endovascular procedures were performed using recombinant tissue plasminogen activator, prourokinase or the Merci device within 12 hours after symptom onset. The analyzed outcomes were revascularization, hemorrhage and excellent functional outcome (Rankin score of 0-1 at 3 months). The analyses included chi(2) and Wilcoxon rank sum, logistic regression (for multivariate analyses with binary outcomes) and linear regression (for continuous outcomes). Significance was set at p < 0.05.


We included 142 patients, 80% treated with intra-arterial fibrinolysis, 22% with percutaneous mechanical embolectomy and 27% treated with intravenous fibrinolysis prior to endovascular intervention. Age (OR = 0.956, 95% CI = 0.927-0.986, p = 0.0041), National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score on admission (OR = 0.881, 95% CI = 0.812-0.957, p = 0.0025) and history of hyperlipidemia (OR = 0.284, 95% CI = 0.08-0.99, p = 0.0478) were negatively associated with excellent functional outcome at 3 months. Every 50 mg/dl increment in the total cholesterol level resulted in 64% decrease in the odds of excellent functional outcome (OR = 0.36, 95% CI = 0.447-0.882, p = 0.0253). History of hyperlipidemia decreased the likelihood of neurological improvement (p = 0.0462) and was associated with a higher NIHSS score at 7 days or discharge. Statin use was related to an average 6.5-unit NIHSS decrease at discharge (p = 0.0168). Statins were not associated with increased frequency of recanalization or symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage.


History of hyperlipidemia may have a negative impact on the outcomes of acute ischemic stroke treated with intra-arterial fibrinolysis or percutaneous mechanical embolectomy. Statin use before and after these procedures may be related to better neurological outcomes. Larger prospective studies are needed to endorse these findings.

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