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Wide Variations Seen in U.S. Stroke Care

Posted 7 Jul 2015 by

TUESDAY, July 7, 2015 – Americans' odds of receiving a drug that can halt strokes in progress may vary widely depending on their ZIP codes, a new study finds. Experts said the findings, reported in the July issue of the journal Stroke, help verify what everyone has suspected: There are disparities in emergency stroke care across the United States, specifically in the use of a clot-busting drug called tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA. And the magnitude of the disparities was "striking," said senior researcher Dr. James Burke, of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. In 20 percent of hospital markets, not a single stroke patient received tPA over four years, Burke's team found. In others, up to 14 percent of stroke patients received the drug. The big question is: Why? "We really don't know what's driving this," Burke said. The hospital markets that most often gave tPA were ... Read more

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Drug Combo Keeps Kidney Artery-Vein Grafts Viable

Posted 20 May 2009 by

WEDNESDAY, May 20 – A combination of aspirin and the anti-clotting drug dipyridamole reduces blockages and extends the useful life of new artery-vein access grafts used for kidney dialysis, new research has found. When arteriovenous (AV) grafts fail, it is often due to stenosis – a narrowing of blood vessels – at the graft site, and subsequent clotting. If the AV graft is blocked, it can't be used for dialysis, and this is a major cause of declining health in dialysis patients, according to background information in a U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases news release about the study. In the study from the Dialysis Access Consortium, 649 patients with new AV grafts at 13 sites in the United States were randomly assigned to the combination treatment or placebo. The researchers found that the combination treatment decreased the rate of loss of primary ... Read more

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