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Acute Ischaemic Stroke

Acute ischaemic stroke is caused by sudden blockage of a major brain artery usually from migration of a solid blood clot from the heart or neck artery directly into the brain. This causes severe and significant interruption of blood flow to the brain which if untreated can result in permanent brain damage within minutes to hours.

Multiple international clinical trials published since 2015 have now shown that direct removal of the obstructing blood clot from the major brain artery by emergency endovascular techniques is the best available treatment in suitable patients. Emergency Mechanical Thrombectomy has been successfully performed at Gold Coast University Hospital for well over ten years who have been pioneers in developing and researching the best treatment options over the past decade.

Acute stroke patients are transferred directly to Gold Coast University Hospital from all over Queensland and Northern New South Wales for emergency treatment when required 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Not all patients are suitable for the treatment which first requires emergency assessment with high quality CT scans of the brain including CT angiography and CT perfusion.

The procedure usually involves General Anaesthesia and then rapid internal access to the blocked brain artery from an artery in the wrist or upper leg. Using sophisticated navigation systems, the blocked artery in the brain can be accessed and unblocked restoring blood flow to the brain. If treated before irreversible damage has occurred the brain can recover and return to normal function with little or no deficit. This allows patients to return to independent living and make a full recovery from a potentially devastating major stroke.

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