Results of a 1-year quality-improvement process to reduce door-to-needle time in acute ischemic stroke with MRI screening

D Sablot, N Gaillard, C Colas, P Smadja, C Gely, A Dutray, J-M Bonnec, S Jurici, G Farouil, A Ferraro-Allou, M Jantac, T Allou, C Pujol, N Olivier, A Laverdure, B Fadat, J Mas, A Dumitrana, Y Garcia, H Touzani, P Perucho, T Moulin, C Richard, C Heroum, S Bouly, C Sagnes-Raffy, D Heve
Revue Neurologique 2017, 173 (1-2): 47-54

OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of a 1-year quality-improvement (QI) process to reduce door-to-needle (DTN) time in a secondary general hospital in which multimodal MRI screening is used before tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) administration in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS).

METHODS: The QI process was initiated in January 2015. Patients who received intravenous (iv) tPA<4.5h after AIS onset between 26 February 2015 to 25 February 2016 (during implementation of the QI process; the "2015 cohort") were identified (n=130), and their demographic and clinical characteristics and timing metrics compared with those of patients treated by iv tPA in 2014 (the "2014 cohort", n=135).

RESULTS: Of the 130 patients in the 2015 cohort, 120 (92.3%) of them were screened by MRI. The median DTN time was significantly reduced by 30% (from 84min in 2014 to 59min; P<0.003), while the proportion of treated patients with a DTN time≤60min increased from 21% to 52% (P<0.0001). Demographic and baseline characteristics did not significantly differ between cohorts, and the improvement in DTN time was associated with better outcomes after discharge (patients with a 0-2 score on the modified rankin scale: 59% in the 2015 cohort vs 42.4% in the 2014 cohort; P<0.01). During the 1-year QI process, the median DTN time decreased by 15% (from 65min in the first trimester to 55min in the last trimester; P≤0.04) with a non-significant 1.5-fold increase in the proportion of treated patients with a DTN time≤60min (from 41% to 62%; P=0.09).

CONCLUSION: It is feasible to deliver tPA to patients with AIS within 60min in a general hospital, using MRI as the routine screening modality, making this QI process to reduce DTN time widely applicable to other secondary general hospitals.

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