Laser sheds light on stroke patients

Jan 04, 2006

A technique that creates and images blood clots in the brain may help researchers understand the small strokes implicated in many forms of dementia.

University of California, San Diego researchers used a laser to trigger the formation of individual blood clots in tiny arteries of the brains of anesthetized rats to monitor the resulting changes in blood flow.

They say their study provides a way to understand small strokes common in elderly humans. These strokes often cause no immediate symptoms, but they are thought to contribute to dementia and may ultimately cause larger strokes.

The study is published in the online edition of the journal Public Library of Science Biology.

In the study, the team members used tightly focused laser light to excite a dye that they had injected into the bloodstream. The excited dye reacted with oxygen to form a free radical, which "nicked" the cells lining the blood vessel at the target location, and triggered the natural blood clotting cascade.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: A word in your ear, but make it snappy

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Treatment for stroke-related blood clots shows promise

Jan 31, 2011

Devices for removing or destroying blood clots in stroke victims may improve medical outcomes for some patients, but further research is needed to show who might benefit most from the treatment and when it ...

Recommended for you

A word in your ear, but make it snappy

12 hours ago

To most, crocodiles conjure images of sharp teeth, powerful jaws and ferocious, predatory displays – but they are certainly not famous for their hearing abilities. However, this could all change, as new ...

Understanding the economics of human trafficking

13 hours ago

Although Europe is one of the strictest regions in the world when it comes to guaranteeing the respect of human rights, the number of people trafficked to or within the EU still amounts to several hundred ...

User comments : 0