Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study finds paramedics skilled in identifying strokes

29.03.2012
If a paramedic suspects a patient is having a stroke, the paramedic is probably right, a Loyola University Medical Center study has found.

Researchers examined the records of 5,300 patients who were brought to Loyola's emergency room by emergency medical services (EMS). Paramedics were able to identify stroke patients with a 99.3 percent specificity. (In diagnosing disease, a high specificity rate indicates there's a high probability the patient actually has the disease.)

"If a paramedic thinks a patient is having a stroke, that should be a reliable indicator that the hospital's stroke team should be activated," said Dr. Michael Schneck, a co-author of the study, which will be presented at the 64th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans.

Dr. Mark Cichon, who heads Loyola's emergency room and is another co-author, said the findings illustrate that paramedics "are very well trained in stroke recognition." He added that stroke is one of many emergency conditions in which paramedics are trained to initiate treatment before the patient arrives at the hospital.

Schneck is a professor in the departments of Neurology and Neurological Surgery of Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine and medical director of the Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit. Cichon is a professor in the Department of Surgery and division director of Emergency Medical Services. Other co-authors are Elizabeth Wild (first author); Yongwoo Kim, MD; Alexander Venizelos, MD; and David Hyman.

Most strokes are caused by blood clots in the brain. If given promptly, the clot-busting drug tPA, in certain cases, can dissolve the clot and stop the stroke before it causes permanent damage. But before tPA is given, a patient must undergo a CT scan to confirm the stroke is caused by a clot. (About 15 percent of strokes are caused by bleeding in the brain; in such cases, administering tPA could make strokes worse.)

Since every minute counts, hospitals are striving to reduce the "door-to-needle" time -- the length of time it takes from when a stroke patient arrives at the emergency room door until the patient is given intravenous tPA. One way Loyola is cutting times is by having the ambulance radio ahead when it is bringing in an apparent stroke patient. Loyola's stroke team then is activated and ready to go into action as soon as the patient arrives, Cichon said.

In the study, Loyola researchers reviewed the records of 5,300 patients who were transported by EMS to Loyola between Oct. 1, 2010, and June 30, 2011.

While the EMS specificity rate in identifying strokes was 99.3 percent, the sensitivity rate was only 51 percent. In other words, when paramedics suspected patients were having strokes, they were probably correct -- but they also missed many cases. Of the 96 actual strokes, paramedics correctly identified 49 cases, but missed 47. Paramedics were most likely to miss strokes in patients younger than 45.

"Sensitivity of EMS impression of stroke still requires improvement to reduce time to treatment for acute stroke patients," researchers wrote.
Although the study involved only one center, it nevertheless provides a representative EMS snapshot, Cichon said. He noted that Loyola's EMS system includes a diverse mix of 54 municipalities and private ambulance companies.

Loyola provides evidence-based, specialized stroke care 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Loyola is certified by the Joint Commission as an Advanced Primary Stroke Center. It is staffed by board-certified vascular neurologists and a multidisciplinary stroke team.

For three years in a row, Loyola has won a Get with the Guidelines® Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.

Jim Ritter | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.lumc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Organ-on-a-chip mimics heart's biomechanical properties
23.02.2017 | Vanderbilt University

nachricht Researchers identify cause of hereditary skeletal muscle disorder
22.02.2017 | Klinikum der Universität München

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>