Team-based care has been emphasized as a strategy to improve and optimize outcomes for broad groups of patients who have presented with often complex medical conditions including large vessel cerebral occlusion. Although neurointerventionalists from different specialties perform mechanical embolectomy, which has become the standard of care for large vessel cerebral occlusion, these specialties are limited by relatively low numbers typically concentrated in a small number of sites. In this single center experience, approximately 50 patients with large vessel stroke were transferred out of an emergency room to other centers despite the availability of an experienced cardiologist with extensive carotid experience. Such transfer strategies typically result in delays in receiving reperfusion and, therefore, may decrease the success rates and substantial improvement that can be obtained by patients in this setting. Trained interventional cardiologists in centers with limited 24/7/365 coverage could achieve rapid revascularization and reperfusion saving lives. In order to accommodate the need for treating these patients, carotid stent trained cardiologists should enter the arena, learn mechanical embolectomy, and be supported by their colleagues from other disciplines on acute stroke care teams.
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