JOURNAL ARTICLE

Pre-Hospital Glyceryl Trinitrate: Potential for Use in Intracerebral Hemorrhage

Jason J Chang, Nerses Sanossian
Journal of Neurological Disorders 2013 November 14, 2 (1)
25309942

BACKGROUND: Intracerebral hemorrhage is associated with poor clinical outcome and high mortality. Research and treatment modalities have focused on the expansion of the primary hematoma through blood pressure control and activation of coagulation factors. However, clinical trials have failed to show decreased rates of death or disability in intracerebral hemorrhage following hospital initiation of blood pressure control. However, as clinical deterioration often occurs immediately after onset, pre-hospital initiation of blood pressure control may be more ideal.

METHODS: Relevant terms in the National Library of Medicine PubMed database and selected research including basic science, translational reports, meta-analyses, and clinical studies were searched.

RESULTS: Trends indicating improved clinical outcome in intracerebral hemorrhage after hospital-initiated intensive systolic blood pressure control (goal<140 mmHg) have been demonstrated. Statistical significance may not have been obtained because of late treatment times of blood pressure control that approached median 4-6 hours after clinical onset. One trial utilizing glyceryl trinitrate in the pre-hospital setting has been shown to significantly decrease blood pressure within fifteen minutes and improve 90-day clinical outcome.

CONCLUSIONS: Glyceryl trinitrate represents an ideal pre-hospital blood pressure medication because it can be delivered via sublingual or transdermal routes, has a quick and graded onset of action, has neuroprotective effects, maintains cerebral perfusion, and has an established record of safety. As intracerebral hemorrhage requires prompt action to prevent clinical deterioration, more emphasis on pre-hospital therapies for blood pressure reduction will become essential in future therapies.

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