Background: Endovascular techniques for treatment of large vessel occlusions (LVO) in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS) have advanced in recent years. We report a multicenter experience using a combined aspiration and stent retriever technique for mechanical thrombectomy (MT).
Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 32 consecutive MT patients using a novel, combined approach of Stent retriever Assisted Vacuum-locked Extraction (SAVE) by 3 operators at 3 stroke centers. Primary endpoint was successful first-pass reperfusion with a modified Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction (mTICI) score of 3. Secondary endpoints were number of passes, time from groin puncture to reperfusion, embolization to new territories (ENT), postinterventional symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (sICH) and clinical outcome at discharge.
Results: First-pass mTICI 3 reperfusion was achieved in 23 out of 32 patients (72%) with a mean groin puncture to reperfusion time of 36.0 min ± 15.8 and mTICI 3 was accomplished in 25 out of 32 cases (78%) with a maximum of 3 attempts. Successful reperfusion (mTICI ≥ 2b) was achieved in all patients (100%) with a mean time from groin puncture to reperfusion of 44.5 min ± 25.8 and an average of 1.2 ± 0.7 attempts. The rate of ENT was 0% and 1 patient with sICH after MT died on postoperative day 4. At discharge, the median National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score was 4 (range 0-17) and favorable neurological outcome by the modified Rankin score (mRS ≤ 2) was achieved in 19 out of 32 patients (59%).
Conclusion: SAVE is fast and appears to be very effective in terms of first-pass complete reperfusion in patients with LVO.
Keywords: Acute ischemic stroke; Large vessel occlusion; Mechanical thrombectomy; SAVE.