Publications by authors named "Sohei Yoshimura"

46 Publications

Systematic review of coexistent epileptic seizures and Alzheimer's disease: Incidence and prevalence.

J Am Geriatr Soc 2021 Mar 19. Epub 2021 Mar 19.

Neuroscience Research Australia, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Background/objectives: Coexistent seizures add complexity to the burden of Alzheimer's disease (AD). We aim to estimate the incidence and prevalence of coexistent seizures and AD and summarize characteristics.

Design: A systematic review and meta-analysis (PROSPERO protocol registration CRD42020150479).

Setting: Population-, community-, hospital-, or nursing home-based.

Participants And Measurements: Thirty-nine studies reporting on seizure incidence and prevalence in 21,198 and 380,777 participants with AD, respectively, and AD prevalence in 727,446 participants with seizures. When statistical heterogeneity and inconsistency (assessed by Q statistic and I ) were not shown, rates were synthesized using random effect.

Results: Studies were conducted in Australia, Brazil, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Taiwan, United Kingdom, and United States. The incidence of seizures among people with clinically diagnosed AD ranged from 4.2 to 31.5 per 1000 person-years. Prevalence of seizures among people with clinically diagnosed AD ranged from 1.5% to 12.7% generally, but it rose to the highest (49.5% of those with early-onset AD) in one study. Meta-analysis reported a combined seizure prevalence rate among people with pathologically verified AD at 16% (95% confidence interval [CI] 14-19). Prevalence of seizure in autosomal dominant AD (ADAD) ranged from 2.8% to 41.7%. Being younger was associated with higher risk of seizure occurrence. Eleven percent of people with adult-onset seizures had AD (95%CI, 7-14).

Conclusion: Seizures are common in those with AD, and seizure monitoring may be particularly important for younger adults and those with ADAD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jgs.17101DOI Listing
March 2021

The impact of baseline potassium intake on the dose-response relation between sodium reduction and blood pressure change: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized trials.

J Hum Hypertens 2021 Mar 5. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

The George Institute for Global Health, UNSW Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia.

Sodium and potassium appear to interact with each other in their effects on blood pressure with potassium supplementation having a greater blood pressure lowering-effect when sodium intake is high. Whether the effect of sodium reduction on blood pressure varies according to potassium intake levels is unclear. We carried out a systematic review and meta-analysis to examine the impact of baseline potassium intake on blood pressure response to sodium reduction in randomized trials in adult populations, with sodium and potassium intake estimated from 24-h urine samples. We included 68 studies involving 5708 participants and conducted univariable and multivariable meta-regression. The median intake of baseline potassium was 67.7 mmol (Interquartile range: 54.6-76.4 mmol), and the mean reduction in sodium intake was 128 mmol (95% CI: 107-148). Multivariable meta-regression that included baseline 24-h urinary potassium excretion, age, ethnicity, baseline blood pressure, change in 24-h urinary sodium excretion, as well as the interaction between baseline 24-h urinary potassium excretion and change in 24-h urinary sodium excretion did not identify a significant association of baseline potassium intake levels with the blood pressure reduction achieved with a 50 mmol lowering of sodium intake (p > 0.05 for both systolic and diastolic blood pressure). A higher starting level of blood pressure was consistently associated with a greater blood pressure reduction from reduced sodium consumption. However, the nonsignificant findings may subject to the limitations of the data available. Additional studies with more varied potassium intake levels would allow a more confident exclusion of an interaction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41371-021-00510-xDOI Listing
March 2021

The bleeding with antithrombotic therapy study 2: Rationale, design, and baseline characteristics of the participants.

Eur Stroke J 2020 Dec 24;5(4):423-431. Epub 2020 Sep 24.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Aims: The bleeding risk of current antithrombotic strategies in clinical settings, including recently developed agents, needs to be clarified.

Methods And Design: In an investigator-initiated, prospective, multicentre, observational study, patients with cerebrovascular or cardiovascular diseases who were taking oral antiplatelet or anticoagulant agents were enrolled. Compulsory multimodal magnetic resonance images were acquired at baseline to assess cerebral small vessel disease. Six-month follow-up will be performed for two years. The primary outcome is major bleeding as defined by the International Society on Thrombosis and Hemostasis.

Results: Between October 2016 and March 2019, 5306 patients (71.7 ± 11.2 years old, 1762 women) were enrolled. Previous intracranial haemorrhage was documented in 181 patients (3.4%), cerebrovascular disease (including asymptomatic) requiring antithrombotic therapy in 5006 patients (94.3%), and atrial fibrillation in 1061 patients (20.0%). At entry, 3726 patients (70.2%) were taking antiplatelet agents alone, including 551 (10.4%) using dual antiplatelet agents, 1317 (24.8%) taking anticoagulants alone, and the remaining 263 (5.0%) taking both. The leading antiplatelet agent was clopidogrel (2014 patients), and the leading combination of dual antiplatelet medication was clopidogrel plus aspirin (362). Use of direct oral anticoagulants (1029 patients, 19.4%) exceeded warfarin use (554, 10.4%). The number of pivotal bleeding events exceeded 200 in April 2020.

Conclusions: This study is expected to provide the incidence of bleeding complications of recent oral antithrombotics in clinical practice and identify their associations with underlying small vessel disease and other biomarkers. Novel risk stratification models for bleeding risk will be able to be created based on the study results.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2396987320960618DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7856591PMC
December 2020

A nomogram to predict unfavourable outcome in patients receiving oral anticoagulants for atrial fibrillation after stroke.

Eur Stroke J 2020 Dec 26;5(4):384-393. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Neurology and Stroke Center, University Hospital Basel and University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.

Introduction: It is unknown whether the type of treatment (direct oral anticoagulant versus vitamin K antagonist) and the time of treatment introduction (early versus late) may affect the functional outcome in stroke patients with atrial fibrillation. We aimed to develop and validate a nomogram model including direct oral anticoagulant/vitamin K antagonist and early/late oral anticoagulant introduction for predicting the probability of unfavourable outcome after stroke in atrial fibrillation-patients.

Patients And Methods: We conducted an individual patient data analysis of four prospective studies. Unfavourable functional outcome was defined as three-month modified Rankin Scale score 3 -6. To generate the nomogram, five independent predictors including age (<65 years, reference; 65--79; or 80), National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score (0--5 points, reference; 6--15; 16--25; or >25), acute revascularisation treatments (yes, reference, or no), direct oral anticoagulant (reference) or vitamin K antagonist, and early (7 days, reference) or late (8--30) anticoagulant introduction entered into a final logistic regression model. The discriminative performance of the model was assessed by using the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve.

Results: A total of 2102 patients with complete data for generating the nomogram was randomly dichotomised into training ( = 1553) and test ( = 549) sets. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.822 (95% confidence interval, CI: 0.800--0.844) in the training set and 0.803 (95% CI: 0.764--0.842) in the test set. The model was adequately calibrated (9.852;  = 0.276 for the Hosmer--Lemeshow test).

Discussion And Conclusion: Our nomogram is the first model including type of oral anticoagulant and time of treatment introduction to predict the probability of three-month unfavourable outcome in a large multicentre cohort of stroke patients with atrial fibrillation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2396987320945840DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7856583PMC
December 2020

Low-Dose vs Standard-Dose Alteplase in Acute Lacunar Ischemic Stroke: The ENCHANTED Trial.

Neurology 2021 03 3;96(11):e1512-e1526. Epub 2021 Feb 3.

From The George Institute for Global Health, Faculty of Medicine (Z.Z., C.D., C.X., S. Yoshimura, C.C., T.T.-Y., A.M., X.C., M.L.H., M.W., J.C., C.S.A.), and South Western Clinical School (M.W.P.), University of New South Wales Sydney, Australia; Department of Radiology (Z.Z., J.X.), Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China; Department of Neurology (C.D., C.C., C.S.A.), Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Health Partners; Sydney Medical School (C.D., C.C.), University of Sydney, Australia; Department of Neurosurgery (C.X.), West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China; Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (S. Yoshimura, T.T.-Y.), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Osaka; Department of Neurology and Neuroscience (T.T.-Y.), Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Science, Japan; Department of Neurology (S. You), the Second Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou, China; The George Institute for Global Health, School of Public Health (M.W.), Imperial College, London; Department of Cardiovascular Sciences and NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Center (T.G.R.), University of Leicester, UK; Melbourne Brain Centre, Royal Melbourne Hospital University Department of Medicine (M.W.P.), University of Melbourne, Australia; Departments of Clinical Neurosciences and Radiology, Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Cumming School of Medicine (A.M.D.), University of Calgary, Canada; Westmead Applied Research Centre (R.I.L.), University of Sydney, Australia; Division of Neuroimaging Sciences, Edinburgh Imaging and Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences (G.M., J.M.W.), and UK Dementia Research Institute (J.M.W.), University of Edinburgh; and The George Institute China at Peking University Health Science Center (C.S.A.), Beijing, China.

Objective: To determine any differential efficacy and safety of low- vs standard-dose IV alteplase for lacunar vs nonlacunar acute ischemic stroke (AIS), we performed post hoc analyzes from the Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study (ENCHANTED) alteplase dose arm.

Methods: In a cohort of 3,297 ENCHANTED participants, we identified those with lacunar or nonlacunar AIS with different levels of confidence (definite/according to prespecified definitions based on clinical and adjudicated imaging findings. Logistic regression models were used to determine associations of lacunar AIS with 90-day outcomes (primary, modified Rankin Scale [mRS] scores 2-6; secondary, other mRS scores, intracerebral hemorrhage [ICH], and early neurologic deterioration or death) and treatment effects of low- vs standard-dose alteplase across lacunar and nonlacunar AIS with adjustment for baseline covariables.

Results: Of 2,588 participants with available imaging and clinical data, we classified cases as definite/probable lacunar (n = 490) or nonlacunar AIS (n = 2,098) for primary analyses. Regardless of alteplase dose received, lacunar AIS participants had favorable functional (mRS 2-6, adjusted odds ratio [95% confidence interval] 0.60 [0.47-0.77]) and other clinical or safety outcomes compared to participants with nonlacunar AIS. Low-dose alteplase (versus standard) had no differential effect on functional outcomes (mRS 2-6, 1.04 [0.87-1.24]) but reduced the risk of symptomatic ICH in all included participants. There were no differential treatment effects of low- vs standard-dose alteplase on all outcomes across lacunar and nonlacunar AIS (all ≥0.07).

Conclusions: We found no evidence from the ENCHANTED trial that low-dose alteplase had any advantages over standard dose for definite/probable lacunar AIS.

Classification Of Evidence: This study provides Class II evidence that for patients with lacunar AIS, low-dose alteplase had no additional benefit or safety over standard-dose alteplase.

Clinical Trial Registration: Clinicaltrials.gov identifier NCT01422616.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000011598DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8032382PMC
March 2021

Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Guided Thrombolysis (0.6 mg/kg) Was Beneficial for Unknown Onset Stroke Above a Certain Core Size: THAWS RCT Substudy.

Stroke 2021 01 10;52(1):12-19. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (K.T., M. Inoue, S.Y., M.F.-D., K. Miwa, M. Shiozawa, K. Minematsu, M.K.), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background And Purpose: We determined to identify patients with unknown onset stroke who could have favorable 90-day outcomes after low-dose thrombolysis from the THAWS (Thrombolysis for Acute Wake-Up and Unclear-Onset Strokes With Alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg) database.

Methods: This was a subanalysis of an investigator-initiated, multicenter, randomized, open-label, blinded-end point trial. Patients with stroke with a time last-known-well >4.5 hours who showed a mismatch between diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and fluid-attenuated inversion recovery were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg intravenously or standard medical treatment. The patients were dichotomized by ischemic core size or National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score, and the effects of assigned treatments were compared in each group. The efficacy outcome was favorable outcome at 90 days, defined as a modified Rankin Scale score of 0 to 1.

Results: The median DWI-Alberta Stroke Program Early CT Score (ASPECTS) was 9, and the median ischemic core volume was 2.5 mL. Both favorable outcome (47.1% versus 48.3%) and any intracranial hemorrhage (26% versus 14%) at 22 to 36 hours were comparable between the 68 thrombolyzed patients and the 58 control patients. There was a significant treatment-by-cohort interaction for favorable outcome between dichotomized patients by ASPECTS on DWI (=0.026) and core volume (=0.035). Favorable outcome was more common in the alteplase group than in the control group in patients with DWI-ASPECTS 5 to 8 (RR, 4.75 [95% CI, 1.33-30.2]), although not in patients with DWI-ASPECTS 9 to 10. Favorable outcome tended to be more common in the alteplase group than in the control group in patients with core volume >6.4 mL (RR, 6.15 [95% CI, 0.87-43.64]), although not in patients with volume ≤6.4 mL. The frequency of any intracranial hemorrhage did not differ significantly between the 2 treatment groups in any dichotomized patients.

Conclusions: Patients developing unknown onset stroke with DWI-ASPECTS 5 to 8 showed favorable outcomes more commonly after low-dose thrombolysis than after standard treatment. Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov; Unique Identifier: NCT02002325. URL: https://www.umin.ac.jp/ctr; Unique Identifier: UMIN000011630.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.120.030848DOI Listing
January 2021

Regional Differences in the Response to Acute Blood Pressure Lowering After Cerebral Hemorrhage.

Neurology 2021 02 20;96(5):e740-e751. Epub 2020 Nov 20.

From the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (K. Toyoda, M.K., S.Y., K. Tanaka, K.M.), Center for Advancing Clinical and Translational Sciences (H.Y., M.F.-D., S.O.), and Department of Neurology (M.I.), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan; Department of Public Health Sciences (Y.Y.P., L.F.), Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston; Department of Neurology (Y.H.), St. Marianna University School of Medicine, Kawasaki; Department of Neurosurgery and Stroke Center (Y.S.), Kyorin University School of Medicine, Mitaka; Department of Neurosurgery (T.I.), Gifu University Graduate School of Medicine; Department of Neurosurgery (K.K.), Nakamura Memorial Hospital, Sapporo; Department of Neurology (H.H.), Tokyo Saiseikai Central Hospital, Japan; Department of Neurology (T.S.), Klinikum Frankfurt Höchst, Germany; Department of Neurology (B.-W.Y.), Seoul National University Hospital, South Korea; Beijing Tiantan Hospital (Y.W.), China; China Medical University (C.Y.H.), Taichung, Taiwan; and Zeenat Qureshi Stroke Research Center (A.I.Q.), University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

Objective: To compare the impact of intensive blood pressure (BP) lowering right after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) on clinical and hematoma outcomes among patients from different geographic locations, we performed a prespecified subanalysis of a randomized, multinational, 2-group, open-label trial to determine the efficacy of rapidly lowering BP in hyperacute ICH (Antihypertensive Treatment of Acute Cerebral Hemorrhage [ATACH]-2), involving 537 patients from East Asia and 463 recruited outside of Asia.

Methods: Eligible patients were randomly assigned to a systolic BP target of 110 to 139 mm Hg (intensive treatment) or 140 to 179 mm Hg (standard treatment). Predefined outcomes were poor functional outcome (modified Rankin Scale score 4-6 at 90 days), death within 90 days, hematoma expansion at 24 hours, and cardiorenal adverse events within 7 days.

Results: Poor functional outcomes (32.0% vs 45.9%), death (1.9% vs 13.3%), and cardiorenal adverse events (3.9% vs 11.2%) occurred significantly less frequently in patients from Asia than those outside of Asia. The treatment-by-cohort interaction was not significant for any outcomes. Only patients from Asia showed a lower incidence of hematoma expansion with intensive treatment (adjusted relative risk [RR] 0.56, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.38-0.83). Both Asian (RR 3.53, 95% CI 1.28-9.64) and non-Asian (RR 1.71, 95% CI 1.00-2.93) cohorts showed a higher incidence of cardiorenal adverse events with intensive treatment.

Conclusions: Poor functional outcomes and death 90 days after ICH were less common in patients from East Asia than those outside of Asia. Hematoma expansion, a potential predictor for poor clinical outcome, was attenuated by intensive BP lowering only in the Asian cohort.

Clinicaltrialsgov Identifier: NCT01176565.

Classification Of Evidence: This study provides Class II evidence that, for patients from East Asia with ICH, intensive blood pressure lowering significantly reduces the risk of hematoma expansion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000011229DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7884997PMC
February 2021

Left Atrial Size and Ischemic Events after Ischemic Stroke or Transient Ischemic Attack in Patients with Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation.

Cerebrovasc Dis 2020 11;49(6):619-624. Epub 2020 Nov 11.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background: The present study aimed to clarify the association between left atrial (LA) size and ischemic events after ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF).

Methods: Acute ischemic stroke or TIA patients with NVAF were enrolled. LA size was classified into normal LA size, mild LA enlargement (LAE), moderate LAE, and severe LAE. The ischemic event was defined as ischemic stroke, TIA, carotid endarterectomy, carotid artery stenting, acute coronary syndrome or percutaneous coronary intervention, systemic embolism, aortic aneurysm rupture or dissection, peripheral artery disease requiring hospitalization, or venous thromboembolism.

Results: A total of 1,043 patients (mean age, 78 years; 450 women) including 1,002 ischemic stroke and 41 TIA were analyzed. Of these, 351 patients (34%) had normal LA size, 298 (29%) had mild LAE, 198 (19%) had moderate LAE, and the remaining 196 (19%) had severe LAE. The median follow-up duration was 2.0 years (interquartile range, 0.9-2.1). During follow-up, 117 patients (11%) developed at least one ischemic event. The incidence rate of total ischemic events increased with increasing LA size. Severe LAE was independently associated with increased risk of ischemic events compared with normal LA size (multivariable-adjusted hazard ratio, 1.75; 95% confidence interval, 1.02-3.00).

Conclusion: Severe LAE was associated with increased risk of ischemic events after ischemic stroke or TIA in patients with NVAF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000511393DOI Listing
March 2021

Intravenous alteplase for stroke with unknown time of onset guided by advanced imaging: systematic review and meta-analysis of individual patient data.

Lancet 2020 11 8;396(10262):1574-1584. Epub 2020 Nov 8.

Department of Neurology, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany.

Background: Patients who have had a stroke with unknown time of onset have been previously excluded from thrombolysis. We aimed to establish whether intravenous alteplase is safe and effective in such patients when salvageable tissue has been identified with imaging biomarkers.

Methods: We did a systematic review and meta-analysis of individual patient data for trials published before Sept 21, 2020. Randomised trials of intravenous alteplase versus standard of care or placebo in adults with stroke with unknown time of onset with perfusion-diffusion MRI, perfusion CT, or MRI with diffusion weighted imaging-fluid attenuated inversion recovery (DWI-FLAIR) mismatch were eligible. The primary outcome was favourable functional outcome (score of 0-1 on the modified Rankin Scale [mRS]) at 90 days indicating no disability using an unconditional mixed-effect logistic-regression model fitted to estimate the treatment effect. Secondary outcomes were mRS shift towards a better functional outcome and independent outcome (mRS 0-2) at 90 days. Safety outcomes included death, severe disability or death (mRS score 4-6), and symptomatic intracranial haemorrhage. This study is registered with PROSPERO, CRD42020166903.

Findings: Of 249 identified abstracts, four trials met our eligibility criteria for inclusion: WAKE-UP, EXTEND, THAWS, and ECASS-4. The four trials provided individual patient data for 843 individuals, of whom 429 (51%) were assigned to alteplase and 414 (49%) to placebo or standard care. A favourable outcome occurred in 199 (47%) of 420 patients with alteplase and in 160 (39%) of 409 patients among controls (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 1·49 [95% CI 1·10-2·03]; p=0·011), with low heterogeneity across studies (I=27%). Alteplase was associated with a significant shift towards better functional outcome (adjusted common OR 1·38 [95% CI 1·05-1·80]; p=0·019), and a higher odds of independent outcome (adjusted OR 1·50 [1·06-2·12]; p=0·022). In the alteplase group, 90 (21%) patients were severely disabled or died (mRS score 4-6), compared with 102 (25%) patients in the control group (adjusted OR 0·76 [0·52-1·11]; p=0·15). 27 (6%) patients died in the alteplase group and 14 (3%) patients died among controls (adjusted OR 2·06 [1·03-4·09]; p=0·040). The prevalence of symptomatic intracranial haemorrhage was higher in the alteplase group than among controls (11 [3%] vs two [<1%], adjusted OR 5·58 [1·22-25·50]; p=0·024).

Interpretation: In patients who have had a stroke with unknown time of onset with a DWI-FLAIR or perfusion mismatch, intravenous alteplase resulted in better functional outcome at 90 days than placebo or standard care. A net benefit was observed for all functional outcomes despite an increased risk of symptomatic intracranial haemorrhage. Although there were more deaths with alteplase than placebo, there were fewer cases of severe disability or death.

Funding: None.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)32163-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7734592PMC
November 2020

Intensive versus guideline-recommended blood pressure reduction in acute lacunar stroke with intravenous thrombolysis therapy: The ENCHANTED trial.

Eur J Neurol 2021 Mar 1;28(3):783-793. Epub 2020 Dec 1.

The George Institute for Global Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia.

Background And Purpose: This was an investigation of the differential effects of early intensive versus guideline-recommended blood pressure (BP) lowering between lacunar and non-lacunar acute ischaemic stroke (AIS) in the BP arm of the Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study (ENCHANTED).

Methods: In 1,632 participants classified as having definite or probable lacunar (n = 454 [27.8%]) or non-lacunar AIS according to pre-specified definitions based upon clinical and adjudicated imaging findings, mean BP changes over days 0-7 were plotted, and systolic BP differences by treatment between subgroups were estimated in generalized linear models. Logistic regression models were used to estimate the BP treatment effects on 90-day outcomes (primary, an ordinal shift of modified Rankin scale scores) across lacunar and non-lacunar AIS after adjustment for baseline covariables.

Results: Most baseline characteristics, acute BP and other management differed between lacunar and non-lacunar AIS, but mean systolic BP differences by treatment were comparable at each time point (all p  > 0.12) and over 24 h post-randomization (-5.5, 95% CI -6.5, -4.4 mmHg in lacunar AIS vs. -5.6, 95% CI -6.3, -4.8 mmHg in non-lacunar AIS, p  = 0.93). The neutral effect of intensive BP lowering on functional outcome and the beneficial effect on intracranial haemorrhage were similar for the two subgroups (all p  > 0.19).

Conclusions: There were no differences in the treatment effect of early intensive versus guideline-recommended BP lowering across lacunar and non-lacunar AIS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ene.14598DOI Listing
March 2021

Brain imaging abnormalities and outcome after acute ischaemic stroke: the ENCHANTED trial.

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2020 12 14;91(12):1290-1296. Epub 2020 Oct 14.

The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Objective: To test the hypothesis that imaging signs of 'brain frailty' and acute ischaemia predict clinical outcomes and symptomatic intracranial haemorrhage (sICH) after thrombolysis for acute ischaemic stroke (AIS) in the alteplase dose arm of ENhanced Control of Hypertension ANd Thrombolysis strokE stuDy (ENCHANTED).

Methods: Blinded assessors coded baseline images for acute ischaemic signs (presence, extent, swelling and attenuation of acute lesions; and hyperattenuated arteries) and pre-existing changes (atrophy, leucoaraiosis and old ischaemic lesions). Logistic regression models assessed associations between imaging features and death at 7 and 90 days; good recovery (modified Rankin Scale scores 0-2 at 90 days) and sICH. Data are reported with adjusted ORs and 95% CIs.

Results: 2916 patients (67±13 years, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale 8 (5-14)) were included. Visible ischaemic lesions, severe hypoattenuation, large ischaemic lesion, swelling and hyperattenuated arteries were associated with 7-day death (OR (95% CI): 1.52 (1.06 to 2.18); 1.51 (1.01 to 2.18); 2.67 (1.52 to 4.71); 1.49 (1.03 to 2.14) and 2.17 (1.48 to 3.18)) and inversely with good outcome. Severe atrophy was inversely associated with 7-day death (0.52 (0.29 to 0.96)). Atrophy (1.52 (1.08 to 2.15)) and severe leucoaraiosis (1.74 (1.20 to 2.54)) were associated with 90-day death. Hyperattenuated arteries were associated with sICH (1.71 (1.01 to 2.89)). No imaging features modified the effect of alteplase dose.

Conclusions: Non-expert-defined brain imaging signs of brain frailty and acute ischaemia contribute to the prognosis of thrombolysis-treated AIS patients for sICH and mortality. However, these imaging features showed no interaction with alteplase dose.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jnnp-2020-323015DOI Listing
December 2020

Brain Imaging Signs and Health-Related Quality of Life after Acute Ischemic Stroke: Analysis of ENCHANTED Alteplase Dose Arm.

Cerebrovasc Dis 2020 22;49(4):427-436. Epub 2020 Jul 22.

The George Institute for Global Health, University of New South Wales, Camperdown, New South Wales, Australia,

Background And Purpose: The influence of specific brain lesions on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) after acute ischemic stroke (AIS) is uncertain. We aimed to identify imaging predictors of poor HRQoL in alteplase-treated participants of the alteplase dose arm of the Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study (ENCHANTED).

Methods: ENCHANTED was an international trial of low- versus standard-dose intravenous alteplase in AIS patients, with functional outcome (modified Rankin scale [mRS]) and HRQoL on the 5-dimension European Quality of Life Scale (EQ-5D) assessed at 90 days post-randomization. Brain images were analyzed centrally by trained assessors. Multivariable logistic regression was undertaken in the study population randomly divided (2:1) into training (development) and validation (performance) groups, with age (per 10-year increase), ethnicity, baseline National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score, diabetes mellitus, premorbid function (mRS score 0 or 1), and proxy respondent, forced into all models. Data are presented with odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

Results: Eight prediction models were developed and validated in 2,526 AIS patients (median age 67.5 years; 38.4% female; 61.7% Asian) with complete brain imaging and 90-day EQ-5D utility score data. The best performance model included acute ischemic changes in the right (OR 1.69, 95% CI: 1.24-2.29) and deep (OR 1.50, 95% CI: 1.03-2.19) middle cerebral artery (MCA) regions. Several background features of brain frailty - atrophy, white matter change, and old infarcts - were significantly associated with adverse physical but not emotional HRQoL domains.

Conclusions: In thrombolysed AIS patients, right-sided and deep ischemia within the MCA territory predict poor overall HRQoL, whilst features of old cerebral ischemia are associated with reduced physical HRQoL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000509226DOI Listing
November 2020

Sex Differences in Blood Pressure-Lowering Therapy and Outcomes Following Intracerebral Hemorrhage: Results From ATACH-2.

Stroke 2020 08 6;51(8):2282-2286. Epub 2020 Jul 6.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (M.F.-D., M.K., S.Y., K.M., K.T.), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background And Purpose: Evidence regarding sex differences in clinical outcomes and treatment effect following intracerebral hemorrhage is limited. Using the ATACH-2 trial (Antihypertensive Treatment in Intracerebral Hemorrhage-2) data, we explored whether sex disparities exist in outcomes and response to intensive blood pressure (BP)-lowering therapy.

Methods: Eligible intracerebral hemorrhage subjects were randomly assigned to intensive (target systolic BP, 110-139 mm Hg) or standard (140-179 mm Hg) BP-lowering therapy within 4.5 hours after onset. Relative risk of death or disability corresponding to the modified Rankin Scale score of 4 to 6 was calculated, and interaction between sex and treatment was explored.

Results: In total, 380 women and 620 men were included. Women were older, more prescribed antihypertensive drugs before onset, and had more lobar intracerebral hemorrhage than men. Hematoma expansion was observed less in women. After multivariable adjustment, the relative risk of death or disability in women was 1.19 (95% CI, 1.02-1.37, =0.023). The relative risk of death or disability between intensive versus standard BP-lowering therapy was 0.91 (95% CI, 0.74-1.13) in women versus 1.13 (95% CI, 0.92-1.39) in men ( for interaction=0.11), with inconclusive Gail-Simmon test (=0.16).

Conclusions: Women had a higher risk of death or disability following intracerebral hemorrhage. The benefit of intensive BP-lowering therapy in women is inconclusive, consistent with the overall results of ATACH-2. Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01176565.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.120.029770DOI Listing
August 2020

Thrombolysis Outcomes in Acute Ischemic Stroke by Fluid-Attenuated Inversion Recovery Hyperintense Arteries.

Stroke 2020 07 17;51(7):2240-2243. Epub 2020 Jun 17.

The George Institute for Global Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales Sydney, Australia (Z.Z., S.Y., C.D., A.M., T.T.-Y., C.C., X.W., X.C., J.C., C.S.A.).

Background And Purpose: To determine factors associated with fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) hyperintense arteries (FLAIR-HAs) on magnetic resonance imaging and their prognostic significance in thrombolysis-treated patients with acute ischemic stroke from the ENCHANTED (Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study) trial alteplase-dose arm.

Methods: Patients with acute ischemic stroke (N=293) with brain magnetic resonance imaging (FLAIR and diffusion-weighted imaging sequences) scanned <4.5 hours of symptom onset were assessed for location and extent (score) of FLAIR-HAs, infarct volume, large vessel occlusion (LVO), and other ischemic signs. Logistic regression models were used to determine predictors of FLAIR-HAs and the association of FLAIR-HAs with 90-day outcomes: favorable functional outcome (primary; modified Rankin Scale scores, 0-1), other modified Rankin Scale scores, and intracerebral hemorrhage.

Results: Prior atrial fibrillation, LVO, large infarct volume, and anterior circulation infarction were independently associated with FLAIR-HAs. The rate of modified Rankin Scale scores 0 to 1 was numerically lower in patients with FLAIR-HAs versus without (69/152 [45.4%] versus 75/131 [57.3%]), as was the subset of LVO (37/93 [39.8%] versus 9/16 [56.3%]), but not in those without LVO (25/36 [69.4%] versus 60/106 [56.6%]). After adjustment for covariables, FLAIR-HAs were independently associated with increased primary outcome (adjusted odds ratio [95% CI]: overall 4.14 [1.63-10.50]; with LVO 4.92 [0.87-27.86]; no LVO 6.16 [1.57-24.14]) despite an increased risk of hemorrhagic infarct (4.77 [1.12-20.26]).

Conclusions: FLAIR-HAs are more frequent in acute ischemic stroke with cardioembolic features and indicate potential for a favorable prognosis in thrombolysis-treated patients possibly mediated by LVO. Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01422616.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.028550DOI Listing
July 2020

Thrombolysis With Alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg for Stroke With Unknown Time of Onset: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Stroke 2020 05 6;51(5):1530-1538. Epub 2020 Apr 6.

Department of Neurosurgery, Hyogo College of Medicine, Nishinomiya (S. Yoshimura).

Background and Purpose- We assessed whether lower-dose alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg is efficacious and safe for acute fluid-attenuated inversion recovery-negative stroke with unknown time of onset. Methods- This was an investigator-initiated, multicenter, randomized, open-label, blinded-end point trial. Patients met the standard indication criteria for intravenous thrombolysis other than a time last-known-well >4.5 hours (eg, wake-up stroke). Patients were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg or standard medical treatment if magnetic resonance imaging showed acute ischemic lesion on diffusion-weighted imaging and no marked corresponding hyperintensity on fluid-attenuated inversion recovery. The primary outcome was a favorable outcome (90-day modified Rankin Scale score of 0-1). Results- Following the early stop and positive results of the WAKE-UP trial (Efficacy and Safety of MRI-Based Thrombolysis in Wake-Up Stroke), this trial was prematurely terminated with 131 of the anticipated 300 patients (55 women; mean age, 74.4±12.2 years). Favorable outcome was comparable between the alteplase group (32/68, 47.1%) and the control group (28/58, 48.3%; relative risk [RR], 0.97 [95% CI, 0.68-1.41]; =0.892). Symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage within 22 to 36 hours occurred in 1/71 and 0/60 (RR, infinity [95% CI, 0.06 to infinity]; >0.999), respectively. Death at 90 days occurred in 2/71 and 2/60 (RR, 0.85 [95% CI, 0.06-12.58]; >0.999), respectively. Conclusions- No difference in favorable outcome was seen between alteplase and control groups among patients with ischemic stroke with unknown time of onset. The safety of alteplase at 0.6 mg/kg was comparable to that of standard treatment. Early study termination precludes any definitive conclusions. Registration- URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov; Unique identifier: NCT02002325.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.028127DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7185058PMC
May 2020

Clinical prognosis of FLAIR hyperintense arteries in ischaemic stroke patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2020 May 26;91(5):475-482. Epub 2020 Mar 26.

The George Institute for Global Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Objective: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the association of fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) hyperintense arteries (FLAIR-HAs) on brain MRI and prognosis after acute ischaemic stroke (AIS).

Methods: We searched Medline, Embase and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials for studies reporting clinical or imaging outcomes with presence of FLAIR-HAs after AIS. Two researchers independently assessed eligibility of retrieved studies and extracted data, including from the Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study (ENCHANTED). Outcomes were unfavourable functional outcome (primary, modified Rankin scale scores 3-6 or 2-6), death, intermediate clinical and imaging outcomes. We performed subgroup analyses by treatment or types of FLAIR-HAs defined by location (at proximal/distal middle cerebral artery (MCA), within/beyond diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) lesion) or extent.

Results: We included 36 cohort studies (33 prospectively collected) involving 3577 patients. FLAIR-HAs were not associated with functional outcome overall (pooled risk ratio 0.87, 95% CI 0.71 to 1.06), but were significantly associated with better outcome in those receiving endovascular therapy (0.56, 95% CI 0.41 to 0.75). Contrary to FLAIR-HAs at proximal MCA or within DWI lesions, FLAIR-HAs beyond DWI lesions were associated with better outcome (0.67, 95% CI 0.57 to 0.79). FLAIR-HAs favoured recanalisation (1.21, 95% CI 1.06 to 1.38) with increased risk of intracerebral haemorrhage (2.07, 95% CI 1.37 to 3.13) and early neurological deterioration (1.93, 95% CI 1.30 to 2.85).

Conclusions: FLAIR-HAs were not associated with functional outcome overall but were associated with outcome after endovascular therapy for AIS. FLAIR-HAs were also associated with early recanalisation or haemorrhagic complications, and early neurologic deterioration.

Prospero Registration Number: CRD42019131168.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jnnp-2019-322625DOI Listing
May 2020

Atrial Fibrillation-Associated Ischemic Stroke Patients With Prior Anticoagulation Have Higher Risk for Recurrent Stroke.

Stroke 2020 04 26;51(4):1150-1157. Epub 2020 Feb 26.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (M.K., T.M., S.Y., K. Toyoda), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background and Purpose- Ischemic stroke associated with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) despite prior anticoagulation may indicate underlying problems that nullify the stroke-preventing effects of oral anticoagulants. We aimed to evaluate the risk for recurrent stroke in patients with NVAF with prior anticoagulation, compared with that in patients without prior anticoagulation. Methods- This study comprised pooled individual patient data on NVAF-associated acute ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack from 2011 to 2014 arising from the Clinical Research Collaboration for Stroke in Korea (15 South Korean stroke centers) and the Stroke Acute Management With Urgent Risk-Factor Assessment and Improvement-NVAF registry (18 Japanese stroke centers). Data on 4841 eligible patients from the Clinical Research Collaboration for Stroke in Korea registry were pooled with data on all patients (n=1192) in the Stroke Acute Management with Urgent Risk-factor Assessment and Improvement-NVAF registry. The primary outcome was recurrent ischemic stroke. The secondary outcomes were hemorrhagic stroke and all-cause death. Outcome events were captured up to 1 year after the index event. Results- Among the 6033 patients in the full cohort, 5645 patients were analyzed, of whom 1129 patients (20.0%) had received prior anticoagulation. Median age was 75 years (interquartile range, 69-81 years), and 2649 patients (46.9%) were women. Follow-up data of 4617 patient-years (median follow-up 365 days, interquartile range 335-365 days) were available. The cumulative incidence of recurrent ischemic stroke in patients with prior anticoagulation was 5.3% (60/1129), compared with the 2.9% (130/4516) incidence in patients without prior anticoagulation. The risk for recurrent ischemic stroke was higher in patients with prior anticoagulation than in those without (multivariable Cox shared-frailty model, hazard ratio 1.50 [95% CI, 1.02-2.21]). No significant differences in the risks for hemorrhagic stroke and mortality were seen between the 2 groups. Conclusions- The risk for recurrent ischemic stroke may be higher in NVAF-associated stroke patients with prior anticoagulation than in those without prior anticoagulation. Registration- URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov; Unique identifier: NCT01581502.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.027275DOI Listing
April 2020

Effect of dose and duration of reduction in dietary sodium on blood pressure levels: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised trials.

BMJ 2020 Feb 24;368:m315. Epub 2020 Feb 24.

Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London E1 4NS, UK

Objective: To examine the dose-response relation between reduction in dietary sodium and blood pressure change and to explore the impact of intervention duration.

Design: Systematic review and meta-analysis following PRISMA guidelines.

Data Sources: Ovid MEDLINE(R), EMBASE, and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Wiley) and reference lists of relevant articles up to 21 January 2019.

Inclusion Criteria: Randomised trials comparing different levels of sodium intake undertaken among adult populations with estimates of intake made using 24 hour urinary sodium excretion.

Data Extraction And Analysis: Two of three reviewers screened the records independently for eligibility. One reviewer extracted all data and the other two reviewed the data for accuracy. Reviewers performed random effects meta-analyses, subgroup analyses, and meta-regression.

Results: 133 studies with 12 197 participants were included. The mean reductions (reduced sodium usual sodium) of 24 hour urinary sodium, systolic blood pressure (SBP), and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) were 130 mmol (95% confidence interval 115 to 145, P<0.001), 4.26 mm Hg (3.62 to 4.89, P<0.001), and 2.07 mm Hg (1.67 to 2.48, P<0.001), respectively. Each 50 mmol reduction in 24 hour sodium excretion was associated with a 1.10 mm Hg (0.66 to 1.54; P<0.001) reduction in SBP and a 0.33 mm Hg (0.04 to 0.63; P=0.03) reduction in DBP. Reductions in blood pressure were observed in diverse population subsets examined, including hypertensive and non-hypertensive individuals. For the same reduction in 24 hour urinary sodium there was greater SBP reduction in older people, non-white populations, and those with higher baseline SBP levels. In trials of less than 15 days' duration, each 50 mmol reduction in 24 hour urinary sodium excretion was associated with a 1.05 mm Hg (0.40 to 1.70; P=0.002) SBP fall, less than half the effect observed in studies of longer duration (2.13 mm Hg; 0.85 to 3.40; P=0.002). Otherwise, there was no association between trial duration and SBP reduction.

Conclusions: The magnitude of blood pressure lowering achieved with sodium reduction showed a dose-response relation and was greater for older populations, non-white populations, and those with higher blood pressure. Short term studies underestimate the effect of sodium reduction on blood pressure.

Systematic Review Registration: PROSPERO CRD42019140812.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m315DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7190039PMC
February 2020

Ischemic Stroke despite Oral Anticoagulant Therapy in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation.

Ann Neurol 2020 Feb 12. Epub 2020 Feb 12.

Stroke Unit and Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy.

Objective: It is not known whether patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) with ischemic stroke despite oral anticoagulant therapy are at increased risk for further recurrent strokes or how ongoing secondary prevention should be managed.

Methods: We conducted an individual patient data pooled analysis of 7 prospective cohort studies that recruited patients with AF and recent cerebral ischemia. We compared patients taking oral anticoagulants (vitamin K antagonists [VKA] or direct oral anticoagulants [DOAC]) prior to index event (OAC ) with those without prior oral anticoagulation (OAC ). We further compared those who changed the type (ie, from VKA or DOAC, vice versa, or DOAC to DOAC) of anticoagulation (OAC ) with those who continued the same anticoagulation as secondary prevention (OAC ). Time to recurrent acute ischemic stroke (AIS) was analyzed using multivariate competing risk Fine-Gray models to calculate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

Results: We included 5,413 patients (median age = 78 years [interquartile range (IQR) = 71-84 years]; 5,136 [96.7%] had ischemic stroke as the index event, median National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale on admission = 6 [IQR = 2-12]). The median CHA DS -Vasc score (congestive heart failure, hypertension, age≥ 75 years, diabetes mellitus, stroke/transient ischemic attack, vascular disease, age 65-74 years, sex category) was 5 (IQR = 4-6) and was similar for OAC (n = 1,195) and OAC (n = 4,119, p = 0.103). During 6,128 patient-years of follow-up, 289 patients had AIS (4.7% per year, 95% CI = 4.2-5.3%). OAC was associated with an increased risk of AIS (HR = 1.6, 95% CI = 1.2-2.3, p = 0.005). OAC (n = 307) was not associated with decreased risk of AIS (HR = 1.2, 95% CI = 0.7-2.1, p = 0.415) compared with OAC (n = 585).

Interpretation: Patients with AF who have an ischemic stroke despite previous oral anticoagulation are at a higher risk for recurrent ischemic stroke despite a CHA DS -Vasc score similar to those without prior oral anticoagulation. Better prevention strategies are needed for this high-risk patient group. ANN NEUROL 2020.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ana.25700DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7383617PMC
February 2020

Concentrations of dabigatran administered after acute ischemic stroke.

J Neurol Sci 2020 Apr 22;411:116704. Epub 2020 Jan 22.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background And Purpose: The aim of this study was to evaluate the anticoagulation intensity of dabigatran for acute ischemic stroke patients and hemorrhagic/ischemic events after early initiation of dabigatran.

Methods: Acute ischemic stroke/transient ischemic attack (TIA) patients admitted to our hospital who started dabigatran from January 2012 to December 2017 were studied. Blood samples were drawn just before (0 h) and 4 h after dabigatran at a median of 5 days after starting dabigatran to measure dabigatran concentrations (C, C) based on the thrombin clotting time assay (Hemoclot®).

Results: Of the 70 patients (54 men, 69 ± 9 y), 14 started dabigatran after a TIA, and 56 started it after an ischemic stroke a median of 5 days after onset. C, C was 82.5 ± 58.0, 143.1 ± 98.2 ng/dl (150 mg BID, 35 patients) and 50.6 ± 40.9, 91.2 ± 64.7 ng/ml (110 mg BID, 35 patients). During a median follow-up of 382 (IQR 109-688) days of all 70 patients, five had clinical events. Three patients had bleeding events, two with nasal bleeding (C, C: 50, 80 ng/ml, C, C: 91, 173 ng/ml) and one with GI bleeding (C, C: 5, 5 ng/ml). Two patients had ischemic events, one with ischemic stroke (C, C: 10, 50 ng/ml) and another with acute myocardial infarction (C, C: 40, 40 ng/ml).

Conclusions: There was no obvious relationship between dabigatran concentration and hemorrhagic/ischemic events in this study. Larger sample study will be needed to examine the relationship between the concentration and events in clinical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2020.116704DOI Listing
April 2020

Early Initiation of Direct Oral Anticoagulants After Onset of Stroke and Short- and Long-Term Outcomes of Patients With Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation.

Stroke 2020 03 22;51(3):883-891. Epub 2020 Jan 22.

From the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan (T.M., K. Toyoda, S.Y., M.T., M.S., M. Inoue, M.K.).

Background and Purpose- We aimed to compare outcomes of ischemic stroke patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation between earlier and later initiation of direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) after stroke onset. Methods- From data for 1192 nonvalvular atrial fibrillation patients with acute ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack in a prospective, multicenter, observational study, patients who started DOACs during acute hospitalization were included and divided into 2 groups according to a median day of DOAC initiation after onset. Outcomes included stroke or systemic embolism, major bleeding, and death at 3 months, as well as those at 2 years. Results- DOACs were initiated during acute hospitalization in 499 patients in median 4 (interquartile range, 2-7) days after onset. Thus, 223 patients (median age, 74 [interquartile range, 68-81] years; 78 women) were assigned to the early group (≤3 days) and 276 patients (median age, 75 [interquartile range, 69-82] years; 101 women) to the late (≥4 days) group. The early group had lower baseline National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score and smaller infarcts than the late group. The rate at which DOAC administration persisted at 2 years was 85.2% overall, excluding patients who died or were lost to follow-up. Multivariable Cox shared frailty models showed comparable hazards between the groups at 2 years for stroke or systemic embolism (hazard ratio, 0.86 [95% CI, 0.47-1.57]), major bleeding (hazard ratio, 1.39 [95% CI, 0.42-4.60]), and death (hazard ratio, 0.61 [95% CI, 0.28-1.33]). Outcome risks at 3 months also did not significantly differ between the groups. Conclusions- Risks for events including stroke or systemic embolism, major bleeding, and death were comparable whether DOACs were started within 3 days or from 4 days or more after the onset of nonvalvular atrial fibrillation-associated ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack. Registration- URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01581502.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.028118DOI Listing
March 2020

Low-dose versus standard-dose alteplase in acute ischemic stroke in Asian stroke registries: an individual patient data pooling study.

Int J Stroke 2019 10 21;14(7):670-677. Epub 2019 Jun 21.

Department of Neurology, Huashan Hospital Affiliated to Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Objective: To investigate the comparative efficacy and safety of the low-dose versus standard-dose alteplase using real-world acute stroke registry data from Asian countries.

Methods: Individual participant data were obtained from nine acute stroke registries from China, Japan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan between 2005 and 2018. Inverse probability of treatment weight was used to remove baseline imbalances between those receiving low-dose versus standard-dose alteplase. The primary outcome was death or disability defined by modified Rankin Scale scores of 2 to 6 at 90 days. Secondary outcomes were symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage and death. Generalized linear mixed models with the individual registry as a random intercept were performed to determine associations of treatment with low-dose alteplase and outcomes.

Results: Of the 6250 patients (mean age 66 years, 36% women) included in these analyses, 1610 (24%) were treated with low-dose intravenous alteplase. Clinical outcomes for low-dose alteplase were not significantly different to those for standard-dose alteplase, adjusted odds ratios for death or disability: 1.00 (0.85-1.19) and symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage 0.87 (0.63-1.19), except for lower death with borderline significance, 0.77 (0.59-1.01).

Conclusions: The present analyses of real-world Asian acute stroke registry data suggest that low-dose intravenous alteplase has overall comparable efficacy for functional recovery and greater potential safety in terms of reduced mortality, to standard-dose alteplase for the treatment of acute ischemic stroke.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1747493019858777DOI Listing
October 2019

Direct oral anticoagulants versus vitamin K antagonists after recent ischemic stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation.

Ann Neurol 2019 06 30;85(6):823-834. Epub 2019 Apr 30.

Stroke Unit and Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy.

Objective: We compared outcomes after treatment with direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) and vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) and a recent cerebral ischemia.

Methods: We conducted an individual patient data analysis of seven prospective cohort studies. We included patients with AF and a recent cerebral ischemia (<3 months before starting oral anticoagulation) and a minimum follow-up of 3 months. We analyzed the association between type of anticoagulation (DOAC versus VKA) with the composite primary endpoint (recurrent ischemic stroke [AIS], intracerebral hemorrhage [ICH], or mortality) using mixed-effects Cox proportional hazards regression models; we calculated adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs).

Results: We included 4,912 patients (median age, 78 years [interquartile range {IQR}, 71-84]; 2,331 [47.5%] women; median National Institute of Health Stroke Severity Scale at onset, 5 [IQR, 2-12]); 2,256 (45.9%) patients received VKAs and 2,656 (54.1%) DOACs. Median time from index event to starting oral anticoagulation was 5 days (IQR, 2-14) for VKAs and 5 days (IQR, 2-11) for DOACs (p = 0.53). There were 262 acute ischemic strokes (AISs; 4.4%/year), 71 intracranial hemorrrhages (ICHs; 1.2%/year), and 439 deaths (7.4%/year) during the total follow-up of 5,970 patient-years. Compared to VKAs, DOAC treatment was associated with reduced risks of the composite endpoint (HR, 0.82; 95% CI, 0.67-1.00; p = 0.05) and ICH (HR, 0.42; 95% CI, 0.24-0.71; p < 0.01); we found no differences for the risk of recurrent AIS (HR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.70-1.19; p = 0.5) and mortality (HR, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.68-1.03; p = 0.09).

Interpretation: DOAC treatment commenced early after recent cerebral ischemia related to AF was associated with reduced risk of poor clinical outcomes compared to VKA, mainly attributed to lower risks of ICH. ANN NEUROL 2019;85:823-834.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ana.25489DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6563449PMC
June 2019

Associations of High Intensities on Magnetization-Prepared Rapid Acquisition with Gradient Echo with Aortic Complicated Lesions in Ischemic Stroke Patients.

Cerebrovasc Dis 2019 14;47(1-2):15-23. Epub 2019 Feb 14.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background: Aortic complicated lesions (ACLs) are key parameters for evaluating aortic embolic sources in embolic stroke, and are usually diagnosed using transesophageal echocardiography (TEE). However, alternative methods for diagnosing ACLs have not been well established. We investigated associations between high-intensity areas on T1-weighted imaging (T1WI) with magnetization-prepared rapid acquisition with gradient echo (MPRAGE) and ACLs on TEE among ischemic stroke patients.

Methods: Participants comprised 135 patients (mean age, 71 years; 35 women) with ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack who underwent TEE for evaluation of embolic sources and plaque imaging using MPRAGE for evaluation of aortic or carotid plaques. Aortic plaque with signal intensity ≥200% of sternocleidomastoid intensity on MPRAGE was categorized as "high intensity". ACLs on TEE were defined by focal increases in intima-media thickness (IMT) ≥4.0 mm or the presence of ulcerated or mobile plaques.

Results: Fifty-six patients (42%) showed high-intensity areas on MPRAGE at the aortic arch. Aortic maximum IMT was significantly higher in patients with high intensities than in those without (p < 0.001). Incidences of ACLs (66 vs. 20%, p < 0.001) or ulcerated or mobile plaques (30 vs. 6%, p < 0.001) were significantly higher in patients with high intensities than in patients without. Multivariable logistic regression analysis showed that high intensities on MPRAGE were independently associated with the presence of ACLs (OR 5.72; 95% CI 2.38-13.70) and ulcerated or mobile plaques (OR 4.18; 95% CI 1.29-13.50).

Conclusions: High intensities on T1WI with MPRAGE in the aortic arch were significantly associated with the presence of ACLs. An evaluation of the aortic arch using MPRAGE may be useful for predicting ACLs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000497068DOI Listing
February 2020

Prior Anticoagulation and Short- or Long-Term Clinical Outcomes in Ischemic Stroke or Transient Ischemic Attack Patients With Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation.

J Am Heart Assoc 2019 02;8(3):e010593

1 Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center Suita Japan.

Background We aimed to clarify associations between prior anticoagulation and short- or long-term clinical outcomes in ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Methods and Results A total of 1189 ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation who were hospitalized within 7 days after onset were analyzed. Of these, 813 patients (68.4%) received no prior anticoagulation, 310 (26.1%) received prior warfarin treatment with an international normalized ratio ( INR ) <2 on admission, 28 (2.4%) received prior warfarin treatment with an INR ≥2 on admission, and the remaining 38 (3.2%) received prior direct oral anticoagulant treatment. Prior warfarin treatment was associated with a lower risk of death or disability at 3 months compared with no prior anticoagulation ( INR <2: adjusted odds ratio: 0.58; 95% CI, 0.42-0.81; P=0.001; INR ≥2: adjusted odds ratio: 0.40; 95% CI, 0.16-0.97; P=0.043) but was not associated with a lower risk of death or disability at 2 years. Prior warfarin treatment with an INR ≥2 on admission was associated with a higher risk of ischemic events within 2 years compared with no prior anticoagulation (adjusted hazard ratio: 2.94; 95% CI, 1.20-6.15; P=0.021). Conclusions Prior warfarin treatment was associated with a lower risk of death or disability at 3 months but was not associated with a lower risk of death or disability at 2 years in ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Prior warfarin treatment with an INR ≥2 on admission was associated with a higher risk of ischemic events within 2 years. Clinical Trial Registration URL : http://www.clinicaltrials.gov . Unique identifier: NCT 01581502.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.010593DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6405591PMC
February 2019

NIHSS cut point for predicting outcome in supra- vs infratentorial acute ischemic stroke.

Neurology 2018 10 28;91(18):e1695-e1701. Epub 2018 Sep 28.

From the Faculty of Medicine (S.Y., C.C., S.S., C.D., X.W., J.C., C.S.A.), The George Institute for Global Health, UNSW, Sydney, Australia; Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine (S.Y., S.S.), National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Osaka, Japan; Sydney Medical School (R.I.L.), Westmead Hospital, University of Sydney; Neurology Department (C.C., C.D., C.S.A.), Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Health Partners, Australia; and The George Institute China at Peking University Health Science Center (C.S.A.), Beijing, China.

Objective: To determine the optimal cut point on the NIH Stroke Scale (NIHSS) for predicting poor 90-day clinical outcome in patients with supratentorial and infratentorial acute ischemic stroke (AIS).

Methods: Data are from participants of the alteplase-dose arm of the randomized controlled trial, Enhanced Control of Hypertension and Thrombolysis Stroke Study (ENCHANTED). Associations between baseline characteristics of clinically defined supratentorial and infratentorial AIS patients and poor functional outcome, defined by scores 3-6 on the modified Rankin Scale, were evaluated in logistic regression models, with area under the curve (AUC) receiver operating characteristics defining the optimal NIHSS predictor cut point.

Results: Patients with infratentorial AIS (n = 289) had lower baseline NIHSS scores than those with supratentorial AIS (n = 2,613) (median 7 vs 9; < 0.001). NIHSS cut points for poor outcome were 10 (AUC 76, sensitivity 65%, specificity 73%) and 6 (AUC 69, sensitivity 72%, specificity 56%) in supratentorial and infratentorial AIS, respectively. There was no significant difference in functional outcome or symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage between AIS types.

Conclusions: In thrombolysis-eligible AIS patients, the NIHSS may underestimate clinical severity for infratentorial compared to supratentorial lesions for a similar prognosis for recovery. Because thrombolysis treatment has low effect on stroke outcome in patients with infratentorial AIS when baseline NIHSS score is more than 6, additional treatment such as endovascular treatment should be considered to improve stroke outcome.

Clinicaltrialsgov Identifier: NCT01422616.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000006437DOI Listing
October 2018

Early Achievement of Blood Pressure Lowering and Hematoma Growth in Acute Intracerebral Hemorrhage: Stroke Acute Management with Urgent Risk-Factor Assessment and Improvement-Intracerebral Hemorrhage Study.

Cerebrovasc Dis 2018 10;46(3-4):118-124. Epub 2018 Sep 10.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Osaka, Japan.

Background: Previous studies have revealed that hematoma growth mainly occurs during the first 6 h after the onset of spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). Early lowering of blood pressure (BP) may be beneficial for preventing hematoma growth. However, relationships between timing of BP lowering and hematoma growth in ICH remain unclear. We investigated associations between timing of BP lowering and hematoma growth for ICH.

Methods: The Stroke Acute Management with Urgent Risk-factor Assessment and Improvement (SAMURAI)-ICH Study was a multicenter, prospective, observational study investigating the safety and feasibility of early (within 3 h from onset) reduction of systolic BP (SBP) to < 160 mm Hg with intravenous nicardipine for acute hypertension in cases of spontaneous ICH. The present study was a post hoc analysis of the SAMURAI-ICH study. We examined relationships between time from onset, imaging, and initiation of treatment to target SBP achievement and hematoma growth (absolute growth ≥6 mL) in ICH patients. Target SBP achievement was defined as the time at which SBP first became < 160 mm Hg.

Results: Among 211 patients, hematoma growth was seen in 31 patients (14.7%). The time from imaging to target SBP and time from treatment to target SBP were significantly shorter in patients without hematoma growth than in those with (p = 0.043 and p = 0.032 respectively), whereas no significant difference was seen in time from onset to SBP < 160 mm Hg between groups (p = 0.177). Patients in the lower quartiles of time from imaging to target SBP and time from treatment to target SBP showed lower incidences of hematoma growth (p trend = 0.023 and 0.037 respectively). The lowest quartile of time from imaging to target SBP (< 38 min) was negatively associated with hematoma growth on multivariable logistic regression (OR 0.182; 95% CI 0.038-0.867; p = 0.032).

Conclusions: Early achievement of target SBP < 160 mm Hg is associated with a lower risk of hematoma growth in ICH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000492728DOI Listing
June 2019

Two-Year Outcomes of Anticoagulation for Acute Ischemic Stroke With Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation - SAMURAI-NVAF Study.

Circ J 2018 06 1;82(7):1935-1942. Epub 2018 Jun 1.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center.

Background: We determined the 2-year long-term risk-benefit profile in patients with stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) receiving warfarin or direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) for nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) using a prospective, multicenter, observational registry in Japan.Methods and Results:NVAF patients within 7 days after onset of ischemic stroke/TIA were enrolled in 18 stroke centers. Outcome measures included ischemic and bleeding events and death in the 2-year follow-up period. We enrolled 1,116 patients taking either warfarin (650 patients) or DOACs (466 patients) at acute hospital discharge. DOAC users were younger and had lower National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale, CHADSand discharge modified Rankin Scale scores than warfarin users (P<0.0001 each). Incidences of stroke/systemic embolism (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.07; 95% CI, 0.66-1.72), all ischemic events (1.13; 0.72-1.75), and ischemic stroke/TIA (1.58; 0.95-2.62) were similar between groups. Risks of intracranial hemorrhage (0.32; 0.09-0.97) and death (0.41; 0.26-0.63) were significantly lower for DOAC users. Infection was the leading cause of death, accounting for 40% of deaths among warfarin users.

Conclusions: Stroke/TIA patients receiving DOACs for secondary prevention were younger and had lower stroke severity and risk indices than those receiving warfarin. Estimated cumulative incidences of stroke and systemic embolism within 2 years were similar between warfarin and DOACs users, but those of death and intracranial hemorrhage were significantly lower among DOAC users.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1253/circj.CJ-18-0067DOI Listing
June 2018

Outcome Prediction in Acute Stroke Patients by Continuous Glucose Monitoring.

J Am Heart Assoc 2018 04 12;7(8). Epub 2018 Apr 12.

Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.

Background: The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between glucose parameters obtained by continuous glucose monitoring and clinical outcomes in acute stroke patients.

Methods And Results: Consecutive patients with acute ischemic stroke or intracerebral hemorrhage within 24 hours after onset were included. A continuous glucose monitoring device (iPro2) was attached for the initial 72 hours after emergent admission. Eight glucose parameters were obtained from continuous glucose monitoring: maximum, minimum, mean, and SD of blood glucose levels, as well as area under the curve more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose, distribution time more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose, coefficient of variation (%CV), and presence of time less than 4 mmol/L over 72 hours. The primary outcome measure was death or dependency at 3 months (modified Rankin Scale score ≥3). One hundred patients with acute ischemic stroke (n=58) or intracerebral hemorrhage (n=42) were included. Blood glucose levels varied between 5.2±1.4 and 11.4±3.2 mmol/L over 72 hours, with area under the curve more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose of 0.7±1.4 min×mmol/L, distribution time more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose of 31.7±32.7%, coefficient of variation of 15.5±5.4%, and presence of hypoglycemia in 20% of overall patients. Mean glucose level (adjusted odds ratio, 1.60, 95% confidence interval, 1.12-2.28/1 mmol/L), area under the curve more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose (2.13, 1.12-4.02/1 min×mmol/L), and distribution time more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose (1.25, 1.05-1.50/10%) were related to death or dependency for overall patients, as well as for acute ischemic stroke patients (2.05, 1.15-3.65; 2.38, 1.04-5.44; 1.85, 1.10-3.10, respectively).

Conclusions: High mean glucose levels, distribution time more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose, and areas under the curve more than 8 mmol/L of blood glucose during the initial 72 hours of acute stroke were associated with death or dependency at 3 months.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.008744DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6015417PMC
April 2018

Current status of intravenous tissue plasminogen activator dosage for acute ischaemic stroke: an updated systematic review.

Stroke Vasc Neurol 2018 Mar 13;3(1):28-33. Epub 2018 Jan 13.

Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore.

The optimal dose of recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rtPA) for acute ischaemic stroke (AIS) remains controversial, especially in Asian countries. We aimed to update the evidence regarding the use of low-dose versus standard-dose rtPA. We performed a systematic literature search across MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), PsycINFO and Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) from inception to 22 August 2016 to identify all related studies. The outcomes were death or disability (defined by modified Rankin Scale 2-6), death, and symptomatic intracerebral haemorrhage (sICH). Where possible, data were pooled for meta-analysis with ORs and corresponding 95% CIs by means of random-effects or fixed-effects meta-analysis. We included 26 observational studies and 1 randomised controlled trial with a total of 23 210 patients. Variable doses of rtPA were used for thrombolysis of AIS in Asia. Meta-analysis shows that low-dose rtPA was not associated with increased risk of death or disability (OR 1.13, 95% CI 0.95 to 1.33), or death (OR 0.86, 95% CI 0.74 to 1.01), or decreased risk of sICH (OR 1.06, 95% CI 0.65 to 1.72). The results remained consistent when sensitivity analyses were performed including only low-dose and standard-dose rtPA or only Asian studies. Our review shows small difference between the outcomes or the risk profile in the studies using low-dose and/or standard-dose rtPA for AIS. Low-dose rtPA was not associated with lower risk of death or disability, death alone, or sICH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/svn-2017-000112DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5870642PMC
March 2018