Monday, February 4, 2008

New Treatment Can Clear Brain Clots

clipped from
a tiny vacuum cleaner for the brain: A new treatment for stroke victims promises to suction out clogged arteries
Called Penumbra
Most strokes occur when blood vessels feeding the brain become blocked, starving delicate brain cells of oxygen until they die. For those, the clot-busting drug TPA can mean the difference between permanent brain injury or recovery - but only if patients receive intravenous TPA within three hours of the first symptoms.
Yet fewer than 5 percent of stroke sufferers get TPA, because they don't get specialized care in time
Enter Penumbra, an option for patients who miss out on early care - it can be tried up to eight hours after a stroke strikes - or if standard TPA treatment fails.
stroke symptoms. They include sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side; confusion, trouble speaking or walking; or an abrupt terrible headache
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