Wide variability in prethrombectomy workflow practices in the United States: A multicenter survey

A. P. Kansagra, G. C. Meyers, M. S. Kruzich, D. T. Cross, C. J. Moran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Clinical outcomes in patients with acute ischemic stroke caused by large vessel occlusion depend on the speed and quality of workflows leading to mechanical thrombectomy. In the absence of universally accepted best practices for workflow, developing stroke hospitals can benefit from improved awareness of real-world workflows in effect at experienced centers. To this end, we surveyed prethrombectomy workflow practices at stroke centers throughout the United States. MATERIALS AND METHODS: E-mail and phone interviews were conducted with neurointerventional team members at 30 experienced, endovascular-capable stroke centers. Questions were chosen to reflect workflow components of triage, team activation, transport, case setup, and anesthesia. RESULTS: There is wide variation in prethrombectomy workflows. At 53% of institutions, nonphysician staff respond to stroke alerts alongside physicians. Imaging triage involves noninvasive angiography or perfusion imaging at 97% and 63% of institutions, respectively. Neurointerventional consultation is initiated before the completion of neuroimaging at 86% of institutions, and the team is activated before a final treatment decision at 59%. The neurointerventional team most commonly arrives within 30 minutes. Patients may be transported to the neuroangiography suite before team arrival at 43% of institutions. Procedural trays are set up in advance of team arrival at 13% of centers; additional thrombectomy devices are centrally stored at 54%. A power injector for angiographic runs is consistently used at 43% of institutions. Anesthesiology routinely supports thrombectomies at 67% of institutions. CONCLUSIONS: Prethrombectomy workflows vary widely between experienced centers. Improved awareness of real-world workflows and their variations may help to guide institutions in designing their own protocols of care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2238-2242
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017


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