Stents – treating brain blockages

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Stents, already used to open clogged heart arteries, might have another use: clearing arterial blockages in the brain after traditional stroke treatments fail. In new research involving 19 stroke patients, doctors say this experimental application appears nearly full-proof in unblocking brain arteries in patients for whom other clot-removal methods didn’t work.

“The bottom line is that stroke is a deadly condition,” said study lead author Dr Italo Linfante, director of endovascular neurosurgery and interventional neuroradiology at the Baptist Cardiac and Vascular Institute in Miami. “Up to 10 years ago it was a death sentence. Yet now if you go to the hospital early enough with a stroke there are several ways to be treated.”

Current treatments are 60% successful, he noted, “so we are always looking to develop better and better weapons, and pushing the limits to fix it. And with stents we are reaching 95%, in terms of successfully opening up the arteries.”

Stents in brain restore blood flow

Ischaemic strokes, caused by blood clots, are the more common type of stroke. Haemorrhagic stroke, the other type, occurs when a blood vessel ruptures and bleeds into the brain.

Before participating in the study, none of the patients had benefited from standard treatments used to remove arterial blockages in the brain. These blockages reduce normal blood flow and raise the risk for death and disability. Standard treatments range from clot-dissolving drugs to procedures aimed at suctioning out blockages.

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Vidya Sury

I am a happy Mom, Freelance Writer, Business and Health Blogger and Social Media Explorer. I love Coffee, DIY, Music, Photography, Cooking, Family, Friends and Life. (Yes, I saved the best for last!) I believe that Happiness is a DIY Project. I also blog at Vidya Sury,Going A-Musing and Coffee With Mi I tweet as @vidyasury

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