Pathway Design for Acute Stroke Care in the Era of Endovascular Thrombectomy: A Critical Overview of Optimization Efforts

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Abstract

The efficacy of intravenous thrombolysis and endovascular thrombectomy (EVT) for acute ischemic stroke is highly time dependent. Optimal organization of acute stroke care is therefore important to reduce treatment delays but has become more complex after the introduction of EVT as regular treatment for large vessel occlusions. There is no singular optimal organizational model that can be generalized to different geographic regions worldwide. Current dominant organizational models for EVT include the drip-and-ship- and mothership model. Guidelines recommend routing of suspected patients with stroke to the nearest intravenous thrombolysis capable facility; however, the choice of routing to a certain model should depend on regional stroke service organization and individual patient characteristics. In general, design approaches for organizing stroke care are required, in which 2 key strategies could be considered. The first entails the identification of interventions within existing organizational models for optimizing timely delivery of intravenous thrombolysis and/or EVT. This includes adaptive patient routing toward a comprehensive stroke center, which focuses particularly on prehospital triage tools; bringing intravenous thrombolysis or EVT to the location of the patient; and expediting services and processes along the stroke pathway. The second strategy is to develop analytical or simulation model-based approaches enabling the design and evaluation of organizational models before their implementation. Organizational models for acute stroke care need to take regional and patient characteristics into account and can most efficiently be assessed and optimized through the application of model-based approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberSTROKEAHA120030392
Pages (from-to)3452-3460
Number of pages9
JournalStroke
Volume51
Issue number11
Early online date2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2020

Keywords

  • models
  • organizational
  • stroke
  • acute
  • thrombectomy
  • triage
  • ACUTE ISCHEMIC-STROKE
  • LARGE-VESSEL OCCLUSION
  • MECHANICAL THROMBECTOMY
  • INTRAVENOUS THROMBOLYSIS
  • SUSPECTED STROKE
  • EARLY MANAGEMENT
  • 2018 GUIDELINES
  • TREATMENT UNIT
  • HEALTH-CARE
  • TIME

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