Stroke MRI pp 63-74 | Cite as

Thrombolytic Therapy in Stroke

  • P. D. Schellinger
  • W. Hacke


Up to 85% of all strokes are of ischemic origin and mostly due to blockage of a cerebral artery by a blood clot [129, 388]. After introduction of thrombolytic therapy for the treatment of acute myocardial infarction in the early 1990s [335], major trials for the evaluation of this new therapeutic approach to ischemic stroke were initiated. Occlusion of a brain vessel leads to a critical reduction in cerebral perfusion and, within minutes, to ischemic infarction with a central infarct core of irreversibly damaged brain tissue and an area of variable size of hypoperfused but still vital brain tissue (the ischemic penumbra), which can potentially be salvaged by rapid restoration of blood flow [8, 130]. Therefore, the underlying rationale for the introduction and application of thrombolytic agents is the lysis of a thrombus and subsequent reestablish-ment of cerebral blood flow by cerebrovascular recanalization [132].


Acute Ischemic Stroke Thrombolytic Therapy Intravenous Thrombolysis NIHSS Score Basilar Artery Occlusion 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. D. Schellinger
  • W. Hacke

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