Send to

Choose Destination
Ann Pharmacother. 2017 Dec;51(12):1084-1089. doi: 10.1177/1060028017724804. Epub 2017 Jul 31.

Pharmacist Participation in Acute Ischemic Stroke Decreases Door-to-Needle Time to Recombinant Tissue Plasminogen Activator.

Author information

1 Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, IL, USA.



Pharmacists are an important member of the stroke team and aid in obtaining medication and medical history, providing education, managing blood pressure, reviewing exclusion criteria for recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rtPA), and facilitating reconstitution and administration of rtPA.


To determine if pharmacist presence at bedside during acute ischemic stroke resulted in a reduction in door-to-needle (DTN) times.


This was a retrospective cohort study between January 1, 2011 and December 31, 2015 of patients who received rtPA for acute ischemic stroke in either the emergency department or hospital.


Of the 125 included patients, 45 patients (36%) had a pharmacist present (PharmD group) and 80 patients (64%) did not (no PharmD group). Median DTN time was significantly shorter in the PharmD group: 48 minutes versus 73 minutes in the no PharmD group ( P < 0.01). The goal of DTN ≤60 minutes was met in 71% of patients in the PharmD group compared to 29% ( P < 0.01). Pharmacist at the bedside was the only factor found to be independently associated with reduction DTN time (βcoefficient -23.5 minutes, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] -38.6 to -8.50 minutes).


A pharmacist at the bedside of emergency department or in-patient stroke codes reduced DTN time by a median of 23.5 minutes after adjusting for confounding factors and increased the percentage of patients meeting DTN goal time of ≤60 minutes by 49%. These findings support the inclusion of a stroke-competent pharmacist in the bedside response team for acute ischemic stroke patients.


clinical pharmacy; neuropharmacology; pharmacist/physician issues; stroke; thrombolytics

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center