Background: The ethnic disparities in stroke outcomes have been well described. Stroke is twice more common and leads to higher mortality rates among blacks as compared to whites. We compared the outcomes of patients undergoing endovascular stroke therapy (ET) in a high-volume center according to their racial profile after age adjustment.
Methods: Retrospective analysis of a prospectively collected ET database between September/2010-September/2015. The baseline characteristics of African-American vs. Caucasian patients were compared. Given the impact of age on stroke outcomes additional analyses were performed dichotomizing patients using the median age of the overall cohort. Primary and secondary efficacy outcomes included the rates of good outcome (90-day mRS 0-2) and successful reperfusion (mTICI 2b-3), respectively. Safety outcome was accessed by rates of any parenchymal hematoma (PH-1 and PH-2) and 90-day mortality.
Results: 781 patients fit the inclusion criteria and were included in the analysis; 440 were included in the Caucasian group (56% overall cohort) and 341 in the African-American group (44%). Caucasian patients were significantly older (69±13 vs. 60±14 years-old, p<0.01) but the remaining baseline characteristics were otherwise well-balanced. This included similar baseline CT perfusion core volumes (rCBF<30%, 17.6 ± 20.8 vs. 17.9 ± 32.8; p=0.93). There were no differences in the rates successful reperfusion (mTICI 2b-3: 83% vs. 85%, p=0.37), any PH (8% vs. 5%, p=0.26), or final infarct volume (32 IQR 12-89 vs. 25 IQR 9-67; p=0.12) across the two groups. In the overall cohort, there was a lower proportion of 90-day good outcome (39% vs. 49%; p<0.01) and higher 90-day mortality (32% vs. 16%; p<0.01) among Caucasians presumably due to their older age. Subgroup analysis of patients 65 years-old or younger showed similar rates of 90-day good outcomes (59% vs. 53%; p=0.33) and mortality (17% vs. 12%; p=0.22) across Caucasian and African-American patients.
Conclusion: Aggressive treatment of acute ischemic stroke with endovascular therapy leads to similar outcomes across African-American and Caucasian patients. Greater availability of ET may diminish the ethnic/racial disparities in stroke outcomes.