COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Using a different type of CT scan may reduce the time to essential surgery for patients with the deadliest kind of strokes — emergent large vessel occlusion (ELVO) ischemic strokes — according to research presented today at the Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery’s (SNIS) 18th Annual Meeting. ELVO is caused by a clot that blocks a large vessel, cutting off significant blood flow to the brain. The faster that patients with this kind of stroke receive a type of neuroendovascular stroke surgery called thrombectomy — a minimally invasive procedure that uses a catheter to reopen blocked arteries in the brain — the better their chances are of avoiding serious disability and death.
In the study series, “Novel Cone Beam CT Technology Improves Image Quality for Stroke Assessment: A Prospective Series,” researchers noted that bypassing the CT scan that a stroke patient would normally receive upon arrival at a stroke center in favor of a cone beam CT (CB-CT) available in the surgical room may help doctors shorten the time between stroke symptoms and stroke surgery. CB-CT is a variation on the standard CT scan where the X-ray tube and detector panel utilize a cone-shaped X-ray beam and flat-panel detector, as opposed to CT scanners that use a fan-shaped X-ray beam and a single detector row.
“This new generation of CB-CT technology has tremendous potential to improve patient care by shortening the time between the first stroke symptom and thrombectomy,” said Nicole Cancelliere MRT(R), MSc, a radiographer and research program manager at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, Canada. “Being able to quickly assess patients is one of the most important factors in connecting patients to appropriate care and moving them closer to a full recovery.”
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The study authors followed 105 individuals who received stroke surgery to find out how well the newest type of CB-CT scan was able to create a baseline image of the patients’ brains. The researchers did four studies that reviewed the quality of three types of brain scan images and one type of technology that helps compensate for patient movement during scans to maintain a clear image. The authors found that the newest generation of CB-CT produces improved brain imaging that is of good diagnostic quality for stroke assessment in emergency settings.
“This is an important step toward a direct-to-angio approach for acute ischemic stroke thrombectomy,” said Vitor Mendes Pereira, MD, MSc, director of endovascular research and innovation at St. Michael’s Hospital and lead principal investigator for this study.
About the Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery
The Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery (SNIS) is a scientific and educational association dedicated to advancing the specialty of neurointerventional surgery through research, standard-setting, and education and advocacy to provide the highest quality of patient care in diagnosing and treating diseases of the brain, spine, head and neck.