A pioneering ‘life-saving’ treatment which has been shown to reduce disabilities such as paralysis or loss of speech after a stroke was successfully administered to three patients at Tayside last month.
All are recovering well and, miraculously, two of the patients were able to return home just one week after receiving the treatment.
NHS Tayside introduced a pilot mechanical thrombectomy service in November 2020, which treats stroke patients by physically removing blood clots from blocked arteries in the brain.
The Tayside Thrombectomy Service will be part of a national network of three regional centers with Glasgow and Edinburgh.
Clinicians are now urging patients not to delay getting help for a suspected stroke.
Dr Sanjay Pillai, Consultant Interventional Radiologist and Clinical Lead of the Thrombectomy Service for North Scotland, said: “For patients who are suitable for a thrombectomy, treatment is most effective in the first few hours after a Stroke. Therefore, it is very important that anyone with stroke symptoms seek emergency help by dialing 999 to get treatment as soon as possible.
“We know that the families of patients who have been treated recently suspected a stroke and quickly called 999. The paramedics who are an integral part of the team helped us deliver treatment quickly. I cannot stress enough that it is a team effort that helps provide this service.
“People who suspect they may be having a stroke should not wait to seek help, call for help as soon as you can.”
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Dr Matt Lambert, NHS Tayside clinical lead for stroke, said: “This treatment can provide a very positive outcome for patients if they receive treatment early enough. To see patients receiving this treatment at Tayside and having less disability issues or regaining their pre-stroke abilities is wonderful.
“After having had big strokes, people previously would have been more likely to die or end up with big movement and speech deficits. They would also be hospitalized much longer to receive rehabilitation and recovery treatment.
“This treatment means we can save lives and also reduce the impact of the disabilities that a stroke can cause. This service makes a real difference for patients.