Influence of prior intravenous thrombolysis in patients treated with mechanical thrombectomy for M2 occlusions: insight from the Endovascular Treatment in Ischemic Stroke (ETIS) registry

J Neurointerv Surg. 2023 Nov;15(e2):e289-e297. doi: 10.1136/jnis-2022-019672. Epub 2022 Dec 2.


Background: Intravenous thrombolysis (IVT) for patients treated with mechanical thrombectomy (MT) for proximal occlusions has recently been questioned through randomized trials. However, few patients with M2 occlusions were included. We investigated the influence of prior IVT for patients presenting M2 occlusions treated with MT in comparison with MT alone.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of the Endovascular Treatment in Ischemic Stroke (ETIS) registry, a multicenter observational study. Data from consecutive patients treated with MT for M2 occlusions between January 2015 and January 2022 at 26 comprehensive stroke centers were analyzed. The primary endpoint was 90-day modified Rankin Scale score of 0-2. Outcomes were compared using propensity score approaches. We also performed sensitivity analysis in relevant subgroups of patients.

Results: Among 1132 patients with M2 occlusions treated with MT, 570 received prior IVT. The two groups were comparable after propensity analysis. The rate of favorable functional outcome was significantly higher in the IVT+MT group compared with the MT alone group (59.8% vs 44.7%; adjusted OR 1.38, 95% CI 1.10 to 1.75, P=0.008). Hemorrhagic and procedural complications were similar in both groups. In sensitivity analysis excluding patients with anticoagulation treatment, favorable recanalization was more frequent in the IVT+MT group (OR 1.37, 95% CI 1.11 to 1.70, P=0.004).

Conclusions: In cases of M2 occlusions, prior IVT combined with MT resulted in better functional outcome than MT alone, without increasing the rate of hemorrhagic or procedural complications. These results suggest the benefit of IVT in patients undergoing MT for M2 occlusions.

Keywords: Stroke; Thrombectomy; Thrombolysis.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Brain Ischemia* / drug therapy
  • Brain Ischemia* / surgery
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Ischemic Stroke* / drug therapy
  • Ischemic Stroke* / surgery
  • Mechanical Thrombolysis* / methods
  • Registries
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Stroke* / drug therapy
  • Stroke* / surgery
  • Thrombectomy / methods
  • Thrombolytic Therapy / methods
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Fibrinolytic Agents