Outcomes after thrombolysis in AIS according to prior statin use: a registry and review

Neurology. 2012 Oct 23;79(17):1817-23. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e318270400b.


Background: The impact of prior statin use on outcomes after thrombolysis is unclear. We evaluated outcomes of patients treated by IV, intra-arterial (IA) thrombolysis, or combined therapy, according to prior statin use.

Methods: We analyzed data from a patient registry (606 patients) and conducted a systematic review.

Results: We identified 11 previous studies (6,438 patients) that evaluated the effect of statin use on outcomes after IV thrombolysis (8 studies), IA thrombolysis (2 studies), or a single/combined approach (1 study). In our registry and in most of the retrieved studies, statin users had more risk factors and concomitant antiplatelet treatment than nonstatin users. Regardless of treatment strategy, prior statin use was not associated with favorable outcome (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 1.36; 95 confidence interval [CI] 0.86-2.16), symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (sICH) (OR 0.57; 95% CI 0.22-1.49), or recanalization (OR 1.87; 95% CI 0.69-5.03). In meta-analysis, prior statin use was not associated with favorable outcome (crude OR 0.99; 95% CI 0.88-1.12), but was associated with an increased risk of sICH (crude OR 1.55; 95% CI 1.23-1.95). However, when the available multivariable associations were combined (5 studies), the effect of prior statin use on risk of sICH was not significant (OR 1.31; 95% CI 0.97-1.76).

Conclusions: These results suggest no beneficial or detrimental effect of prior statin use in acute stroke patients treated by IV thrombolysis, IA thrombolysis, or combined therapy, although the numbers of patients treated by IA thrombolysis or combined therapy are too small to exclude an effect.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Brain Ischemia / drug therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Registries*
  • Stroke / drug therapy*
  • Thrombolytic Therapy / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors