Investigational neurostimulation device aims to reduce stroke damage

Nov 17, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Stroke researchers at the Methodist Neurological Institute in Houston are the only ones in Texas to offer a novel device that might extend the acute stroke treatment window from three hours to 24.

The miniature neurostimulator, about the size of a staple, is implanted near the sphenopalatine ganglion, a nerve located in the roof of the patient’s mouth, within 24 hours of the onset of . The minimally takes less than 30 minutes and is performed under .

Pioneered by an Israeli-based company called Brainsgate, a donut-shaped transmitter is placed on the patient’s cheek near the implanted device. A steady stream of is delivered for several hours a day over a five-day period. The neurostimulator is then removed from the patient’s mouth.

“Neurostimulation has been successfully used for years in patients with epilepsy,” said Dr. David Chiu, medical director of the Eddy Scurlock Stroke Center and the study’s primary investigator at Methodist. “We know that stimulating the sphenopalatine ganglion can dilate arteries so that more blood flow is delivered to the stroke-affected hemisphere of the brain.”

The trial, called impact-24 (Implant for Augmentation of CBF Trial in a 24 hour window), is a multi-center, randomized, double blind study taking place over the next two years. Methodist is one of six locations in the United States to offer this feasibility study. If study results are favorable, the may broaden the trial to include more U.S. patients.

Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of long-term adult disability in the United States. Ischemic stroke, or a blood clot to the brain, affects 750,000 Americans each year. The only current FDA-approved treatment is tPA, but the drug must be administered within three hours of symptom onset.

Provided by Methodist Hospital System

Explore further: REM sleep critical for young brain development; medication interferes

Related Stories

Not a moment to lose in therapy for acute stroke

Sep 24, 2008

In an editorial response to a report in the September 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine on the efficacy of intravenous thrombolysis treatment in the hours after acute ischemic stroke, Patrick Lyden, M.D., profes ...

Arrival method, slow response often delay stroke care

Aug 08, 2008

Most stroke patients can't recall when their symptoms started or do not arrive at the hospital in a timely manner, so they cannot be considered for time-dependent therapies such as the clot-busting drug tissue plasminogen ...

Study opens way for later treatment of acute stroke

Sep 15, 2008

The time span in which treatment should be given for acute ischaemic stroke – i.e. stroke caused by a clot or other obstruction to the blood supply – can be lengthened. This according to a study from the Swedish medical ...

Recommended for you

Making waves with groundbreaking brain research

Jul 03, 2015

New research by Jason Gallivan and Randy Flanagan suggests that when deciding which of several possible actions to perform, the human brain plans multiple actions simultaneously prior to selecting one of ...

Long-term memories are maintained by prion-like proteins

Jul 02, 2015

Research from Eric Kandel's lab at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) has uncovered further evidence of a system in the brain that persistently maintains memories for long periods of time. And paradoxically, ...

Water to understand the brain

Jul 02, 2015

To observe the brain in action, scientists and physicians use imaging techniques, among which functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is the best known. These techniques are not based on direct observations ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.