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J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2014 Jan;23(1):160-3. doi: 10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2013.07.032. Epub 2013 Oct 21.

Outcomes after tissue plasminogen activator administration under the drip and ship paradigm may differ according to the regional stroke care system.

Author information

1
Stroke Center, Dong-A University Hospital, Busan, Korea. Electronic address: nrcjk65@gmail.com.
2
Stroke Center, Dong-A University Hospital, Busan, Korea.

Abstract

The drip and ship paradigm for stroke patients enhances the rate of using intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (IVT) in community hospitals. The safety and outcomes of patients treated with IVT for acute ischemic stroke (AIS) under the drip and ship paradigm were compared with patients directly treated at a comprehensive stroke center in the Busan metropolitan area of Korea. This was a retrospective study of patients with AIS treated with IVT between January 2009 and January 2012. Information on patients' baseline characteristics, neuroimaging, symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH), and outcome 90 days after using IVT was obtained from our stroke registry. We surveyed stroke neurologists regarding their pattern of post-thrombolysis care. During the observation periods, we selected 317 patients using IVT. Among these, 239 patients received IVT at our stroke center, and 78 were treated at 21 community hospitals under the drip and ship paradigm. Initial neurologic deficits and the size of ischemic lesions on magnetic resonance imaging were much more severe in patients treated with IVT under the drip and ship paradigm compared with patients treated at our comprehensive stroke center. The prevalence of a poor outcome (modified Rankin Scale score 3-6) 90 days after IVT was much higher in patients treated with the drip and ship paradigm than in those treated at our comprehensive stroke center. Regarding the occurrence of sICH, there was no significant difference between the 2 groups. The clinical characteristics and outcomes after using IVT under the drip and ship paradigm may differ greatly among stroke care systems.

KEYWORDS:

Thrombolysis; drip and ship; outcomes; stroke

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