Mechanical thrombectomy is an advanced, minimally invasive treatment for acute stroke. This endovascular treatment is more effective at removing large blood clots in some stroke patients than clot-busting drugs, called tissue plasminogen activators (tPAs).
If you’ve been diagnosed with a stroke, a tPA may be administered directly to the site of your clot. Your physician will use imaging to evaluate your brain. If the medication does not break up the clot and adequately restore blood flow, mechanical thrombectomy may be recommended.
During a mechanical thrombectomy, a catheter is threaded through an artery in your groin and a stent is inserted into the catheter when it reaches the clot. The stent will be placed past the clot to expand and stretch the walls of the artery to enable blood flow. The stent is then pulled backward to remove the clot.
When used with tPA, mechanical thrombectomy can greatly reduce post-stroke related disability and mortality.
The neurosurgeons and neurologists at the Stroke Center of the Northwell Health Neuroscience Institute provide many leading-edge stroke interventions, including mechanical thrombectomy. This team of specialists works together with supporting physicians in a variety of specialties, including:
- Critical care specialists
- Emergency room doctors
- Nurses and nurse practitioners
- Physician assistants
- Occupational therapists
- Physical therapists
- Speech therapists
Within Northwell Health, there are 14 New York State Department of Health-designated stroke centers throughout Long Island, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island and Westchester. Patients who come through Northwell emergency rooms are quickly examined and given priority in all testing and diagnosis. Within minutes of a stroke code, our team performs a full assessment and CT/MRI imaging, then develops a treatment plan. Following treatment, patients are monitored 24/7 for neurological changes.