The new device is able to remove the clot and restire the blood circulation in one step. The researchers of UCLA Stroke Center have presented the “Covidien Solitaire FR Revascularization Device”, the idea of the device lies in the microcatheter that would be inserted, then the Solitaire will expand and retract back in the microcatheter after trapping the clot.
An experimental device for removing blood clots in stroke patients dramatically outperformed the standard mechanical treatment, according to research presented by UCLA Stroke Center director Dr. Jeffrey L. Saver at the American Stroke Association’s 2012 international conference in New Orleans on Feb. 3.
The SOLITAIRE Flow Restoration Device is among an entirely new generation of devices designed to remove blood clots from blocked brain arteries in patients experiencing stroke. It has a self-expanding, stent-like design and, once inserted into a clot using a thin catheter tube, it compresses and traps the clot. The clot is then removed by withdrawing the device, thus reopening the blocked blood vessel.
In the first U.S. clinical trial of SOLITAIRE, the device opened blocked vessels without causing symptomatic bleeding in or around the brain in 61 percent of patients. The standard Food and Drug Administration–approved mechanical device — a corkscrew-type clot remover called the MERCI Retriever — was effective in 24 percent of cases.
The use of the new device also led to better survival three months after a stroke. There was a 17.2 percent mortality rate with the new device, compared with a 38.2 percent rate with the older one.
About 87 percent of all strokes are caused by blood clots blocking a blood vessel supplying the brain. The stroke treatment that has received the most study is the FDA–approved clot-busting drug known as tissue plasminogen activator, but this drug must be given within four-and-a-half hours after the onset of stroke symptoms, and even more quickly in older patients.
When clot-busting drugs cannot be used or are ineffective, the clot can sometimes be mechanically removed during, or beyond, the four-and-a-half–hour window. The current study, however, did not compare mechanical clot removal to drug treatment.