We have regularly written about the role of technology in our medical care. Here, we look at a new procedure for reducing the impact of strokes.


Direct Carotid Puncture: A Procedure for Reducing the Impact of Strokes

Recently, a team of researchers from the Yale University School of Medicine published a study in the Journal of Neurosurgery on a new procedure to treat difficult strokes. Within their study, they examined the use of direct carotid puncture (DCT) as a treatment method.

For a reader-friendly synopsis of this project, we turn to Futurity.org:

“When we age, the blood vessels become more twisted. Like the knots of a tree. Thus, it becomes more difficult to navigate up to the head,” says Charles Matouk, associate professor of neurosurgery at Yale. In 5 to 10% of stroke patients, this problem makes standard mechanical thrombectomies nearly impossible.

“We know that time is brain for the patient,” says coauthor Nils Petersen, associate professor of neurology. Every minute a stroke goes untreated, 1.9 million neurons die. As a result, immediate treatment is key to saving lives and avoiding disability.

The researchers wanted to see if DCT could offer a safe alternative to accessing the brain from the groin. This procedure involves inserting a catheter through a patient’s neck, right into the carotid artery, and then doing a thrombectomy.. DCT would allow doctors to access the clot much more quickly. Therefore, bypassing an abnormal vascular system. But experts have long considered the procedure riskier than other routes to doing a thrombectomy. The results were promising. Surgeons could complete 19 of the 20 DCT procedures they tried to perform. Of this group, 84% of the patients (16 people) had clots successfully removed.

To read more from Futurity.org, click the image.

Reducing the Impact of Strokes
“We know the natural course of this disease is just devastating,” Nils Petersen says. “This approach offers new hope for patients to restore function when they would otherwise inevitably suffer massive, permanent strokes.”(Credit: Getty Images)


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