Endovascular Therapy for Large Vessel Stroke in the Elderly: Hope in the New Stroke Era

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Background and Purpose: Acute ischemic stroke (AIS) in the elderly encompasses approximately one-third of all AIS cases. Outcome data have been for the most part discouraging in this population. We aim to evaluate the outcomes in a large contemporary series of elderly patients treated with thrombectomy. Methods: Retrospective analysis of a single-center endovascular database for consecutive elderly (≥80 years) patients treated for anterior circulation large vessel occlusion AIS between September 2010 and April 2015. Univariate- and multivariate analyses were performed to identify the predictors of good clinical outcome (90-day modified Ranking Scale [mRS] ≤2). Receiver operating characteristic curves were used to calculate the optimal final infarct volume (FIV) threshold to predict good outcomes. Results: A total of 111 patients met our inclusion criteria (mean age 84.8 ± 4.2 years; National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale [NIHSS] score 19.1 ± 5.6; time from last-known normal to puncture, 349.6 ± 246.6 min; 33% male; 68% Alberta Stroke Program Early CT Score [ASPECTS] ≥8). The rates of successful reperfusion (modified treatment in cerebral ischemia ≥2b), symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage and 90-day mortality were 80%, 7% and 41%, respectively. The overall rate of good outcome was 29% (n = 32/111) but was 52% (n = 13/25) in patients with baseline mRS score of 0-2 who were selected based on CT perfusion and treated with stent retrievers. On multivariate analysis, only ASPECTS (OR 2.17; 95% CI 1.28-3.67.7; p = 0.004) and baseline NIHSS score (OR 0.87; 95% CI 0.77-0.97; p = 0.013) were independently associated with good outcome. A FIV ≤16 ml demonstrated the greatest accuracy for identifying good outcomes (sensitivity 75.0%, specificity 82.6%). Conclusions: Our results are encouraging demonstrating nearly one-third of elderly patients achieving full independence at 90 days. Contemporary treatment paradigms employing optimized patient selection and modern thrombectomy technology may result in even better outcomes.

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