Stent-Assisted Endovascular Thrombolysis Versus Intravenous Thrombolysis in Internal Carotid Artery Dissection With Tandem Internal Carotid and Middle Cerebral Artery Occlusion


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Abstract

Background and Purpose—Tandem internal carotid and middle cerebral artery occlusion independently predicts poor outcome after intravenous thrombolysis. Recanalization of internal carotid artery dissection by stent-assisted angioplasty has recently been proposed when anticoagulation fails to prevent a new ischemic event. We recently reported a case of tandem internal carotid and middle cerebral artery occlusion with dissection of the internal carotid artery successfully treated with endovascular stent-assisted thrombolysis.Methods—We compared clinical outcomes in consecutive patients presenting with tandem internal carotid and middle cerebral artery occlusion with internal carotid artery dissection within 3 hours of symptom onset who were eligible for intravenous thrombolysis, treated by either endovascular stent-assisted thrombolysis or intravenous recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator (rtPA) when an endovascular therapist was unavailable. National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale scores were obtained at baseline and after 24 hours. The modified Rankin Scale score was used to assess outcomes at 3 months. Arterial recanalization was assessed by magnetic resonance imaging.Results—Of 10 patients screened, 6 were treated with endovascular therapy and 4 with intravenous rtPA. Before treatment, mean National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale scores were high and comparable in the 2 groups (17 and 16, respectively). In the endovascular group, all patients achieved middle cerebral artery recanalization with subsequent dramatic improvement versus only 1 patient with middle cerebral artery recanalization in the intravenous rtPA group. At 3 months, 4 patients in the endovascular group had a favorable outcome (modified Rankin Scale score=0). In the intravenous rtPA group, 3 patients had a poor outcome (modified Rankin Scale score≥3).Conclusions—Endovascular stent-assisted thrombolysis is a promising treatment in tandem internal carotid and middle cerebral artery occlusion due to internal carotid artery dissection and compares favorably with intravenous rtPA.

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