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The effect of thrombolysis on short-term improvement depends on initial stroke severity.
Journal of Neurology
A large number of parameters have been identified as predictors of early outcome in patients with acute ischemic stroke. In the present work we analyzed a wide range of demographic, metabolic, physiological, clinical, laboratory and neuroimaging parameters in a large population of consecutive patients with acute ischemic stroke with the aim of identifying independent predictors of the early clinical course. We used prospectively collected data from the Acute Stroke Registry and Analysis of Lausanne. All consecutive patients with ischemic stroke admitted to our stroke unit and/or intensive care unit between 1 January 2003 and 12 December 2008 within 24 h after last-well time were analyzed. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify significant associations with the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score at admission and 24 h later. We also sought any interactions between the identified predictors. Of the 1,730 consecutive patients with acute ischemic stroke who were included in the analysis, 260 (15.0%) were thrombolyzed (mostly intravenously) within the recommended time window. In multivariate analysis, the NIHSS score at 24 h after admission was associated with the NIHSS score at admission (β = 1, p < 0.001), initial glucose level (β = 0.05, p < 0.002) and thrombolytic intervention (β = -2.91, p < 0.001). There was a significant interaction between thrombolysis and the NIHSS score at admission (p < 0.001), indicating that the short-term effect of thrombolysis decreases with increasing initial stroke severity. Thrombolytic treatment, lower initial glucose level and lower initial stroke severity predict a favorable early clinical course. The short-term effect of thrombolysis appears mainly in minor and moderate strokes, and decreases with increasing initial stroke severity.
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