The Particulars: Currently, there is no specific, evidence-based targeted treatment that has been recommended by professional societies for intracerebral hemorrhagic stroke. There is also no long-term randomized data on surgical treatment. A minimally invasive procedure to remove blood clots in this patient population may help improve outcomes.

Data Breakdown: Nearly 100 patients with a bleeding stroke who participated in a study underwent a procedure in which a dime-sized hole was cut in the skull and a catheter was pushed through the clot to deliver recombinant tissue plasminogen activator every 8 hours for 3 days. The clot was removed as it liquefied. When compared with patients who received usual care, those who underwent the surgical procedure had less edema, better functional outcomes at 6 months and 1 year, shorter hospital length of stay, and less need for long-term care.

Take Home Pearl: A minimally invasive procedure to remove blood clots after intracerebral hemorrhagic stroke appears to be safe and may reduce long-term disability.