Does Preexisting Antiplatelet Treatment Influence Postthrombolysis Intracranial Hemorrhage in Community-treated Ischemic Stroke Patients? An Observational Study

Wiley: February 13, 2013

Objectives
Intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) after acute stroke thrombolysis is associated with poor outcomes. Previous investigations of the relationship between preexisting antiplatelet use and the safety of intravenous (IV) thrombolysis have been limited by low event rates. The objective of this study was to determine whether preexisting antiplatelet therapy increased the risk of ICH following acute stroke thrombolysis. The primary hypothesis was that antiplatelet use would not be associated with radiographic evidence of ICH after controlling for relevant confounders.

Methods
Consecutive cases of thrombolysis patients treated in the emergency department (ED) were identified using multiple methods. Retrospective data were collected from four hospitals from 1996 to 2004 and 24 other hospitals from 2007 to 2010 as part of a cluster-randomized trial. The same chart abstraction tool was used during both time periods, and data were subjected to numerous quality control checks. Hemorrhages were classified using a prespecified methodology: ICH was defined as presence of hemorrhage in radiographic interpretations of follow-up imaging (primary outcome). Read more