SIR 2018’s “The Stroke Course” included the latest cutting-edge training based on the most recent trials in the field.
This year’s sessions included a new hands-on training segment for CT perfusion imaging based on new data. Martin Radvany, MD, FSIR, University of Arkansas for Medical Science, said that the results of CT perfusion imaging trials that were announced at the International Stroke Conference in January provided a new paradigm for treating patients within the 6- to 24-hour time window.
“We added a whole segment to teach people how to process these images themselves so they really understand the pitfalls and how to use this technology properly to achieve the best results for patients,” said Dr. Radvany, a co-coordinator for the 2018 Stroke Course.
The comprehensive course for the evaluation, management and treatment of patients suffering from acute ischemic stroke expanded this year from a daylong session to a day-and-a-half event. It started Wednesday afternoon with an emphasis on evaluating patients showing indications of having a stroke. Presentations started with stroke neurologist John W. Cole, MD, MS, University of Maryland School of Medicine, talking about the physical examination of the stroke patient, followed by several CT-related presentations, including a session on CT perfusion imaging presented by Sudhakar R. Satti, MD, Christiana Care Health System, followed by a hands-on workshop.
Thursday’s presentations focused on actual treatment. Amid case presentations and talks about mechanical thrombectomy tools, attendees had the chance during hands-on workshops to try out the latest endovascular stroke treatment devices.
Those who attended both days of sessions and did all of the pre-class work received up to 8.5 hours of CME credit, which fulfills the stroke CME requirements for the year for those currently doing stroke treatment, said Dr. Radvany, a member of the SIR Stroke Advisory Committee.
Looking ahead, the committee is examining ways to create stroke education that would lead to some form of stroke treatment certification for interventional radiologists. That would help IRs become better recognized as critical members of stroke care teams.
While trials from well-organized domestic and international registries show how interventional radiologists can play a key role in positive patient outcomes, there hasn’t been much data about what’s happening at the individual institutional level, where the decisions about who’s involved in stroke care are made.
Committee member David Sacks, MD, FSIR, Reading Hospital, one of the presenters for the Stroke Course, said that SIR is working on gathering data from hundreds of cases from multiple institutions where interventional radiologists have provided stroke care. He said the results would likely be published within a year.
“I think that (IR stroke) care is developing a momentum of its own,” Dr. Sacks said. “Hospitals want to be able to offer that care, they already have interventional radiologists who are available, and they are asking more interventional radiologists to participate.”