New Study Highlights Wide Disparities in Access to Life-Saving Mechanical Thrombectomy Stroke Treatment

The Society of Vascular and Interventional Neurology (SVIN) has released a first-ever global analysis of access to mechanical thrombectomy (MT) for treatment of large vessel occlusion (LVO) stroke, as part of the SVIN Mission Thrombectomy study, Mechanical Thrombectomy Global Access For Stroke (MT-GLASS): A Mission Thrombectomy (MT-2020 Plus) Study, published in the American Heart Association Circulationjournal.

Stroke is the second leading cause of global mortality and the third leading cause of global disability. In 2016, 13.7 million new stroke cases occurred in the world leading to 5.5 million deaths, with approximately half of all stroke-related deaths attributable to acute ischemic stroke. Since 2015, mechanical thrombectomy (MT) has been the established first-line treatment for patients presenting with an acute LVO.

“In the US Stroke is now the number 5 killer but in the rest of the world it is still number 2!”Tweet this

The MT-GLASS study looked at world wide access to the life-saving MT treatment, and the factors that contribute to global access including: 1) income class of the country based on the world bank classification 2) proportion of GDP spent on healthcare, 3) availability of MT infrastructure including MT operators and MT centers, 4) availability of reimbursement for MT, and 5) other relevant stroke systems of care policies.
The study found an extremely low global rate of MT access with an enormous disparity between countries by income level.

“The study findings validate why we founded Mission Thrombectomy in 2016 and our continued mission that has now grown to include 95 countries,” says Dileep Yavagal, Corresponding Author of the Study, Chair of the Mission Thrombectomy initiative, and Past President and Co-founder of SVIN. “The global access to thrombectomy is dismally low with the country’s income level, pre-hospital protocols to bypass non-thrombectomy centers, and operators and thrombectomy center availability all playing critical roles in thrombectomy access in a given region.”

The study was conducted throughout 75 countries using the Mission Thrombectomy global network of regions between November 2020 and February 2021, and received participation from 887 responses in 67 countries.

“Mechanical thrombectomy has proven to be a highly effective therapy for mitigating death and disability since 2015, and it is the largest advancement in stroke treatment in 30 years. Given the widely distributed global burden of stroke, it is critical to have rapid access to MT worldwide in an equitable manner. In the US Stroke is now the number 5 killer but in the rest of the world it is still number 2!” says Ameer E. Hassan, SVIN President, Professor at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and Head of Neuroscience at the Valley Baptist Neuroscience Institute. “The findings highlight distressing results on a global scale, and represent many lives that could have been saved or significantly improved with better access to thrombectomy treatments.”

“We believe that insights gained from this study would inform global interventions to improve access to this life-saving treatment and enable researchers to study nuances of the obstacles to it further,” says Kaiz S. Asif, Corresponding and First author of the study, Medical Director of Stroke and Neuro-endovascular surgery at the Neuroscience Institute, Ascension Health, IL, and Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery at University of Illinois, Chicago. “While we continue to work on innovations in surgical treatments and technologies, we are also determined to expedite their dissemination through Mission Thrombectomy to a large majority of people across the world to whom they are not yet available.”

The study was published on March 8, 2023 through the American Heart Association’s peer-reviewed journal, Circulation–

A recent article titled “This Revolutionary Stroke Treatment Will Save Millions of Lives. Eventually.” published by the New York Times on March 1, 2023 also highlights the advanced endovascular thrombectomy (EVT) treatment option.

About the Society of Vascular and Interventional Neurology (SVIN)
SVIN was created to achieve the highest level of care for patients through increased collaboration in scientific research and by educating young professionals and training young investigators. The Society aims to provide opportunities to connect leaders in the field and provide a common ground for dialogue and creation of practice and safety standards. Our mission is to represent the advancement of interventional neurology as a field with the ultimate goal of improving clinical care and outcomes of patients with stroke and cerebrovascular diseases.

About Mission Thrombectomy |
SVIN’s Mission Thrombectomy: Global Access for Stroke Treatment is changing stroke systems of care by ensuring access to a mechanical thrombectomy as an option for treatment. Mission Thrombectomy is driving this innovation forward by bringing professionals and the public together to spread awareness of the signs and symptoms of stroke, ensuring that all people are empowered to take action immediately and seek treatment at the closest capable facility, and engage others to advocate for access and treatment across the globe. Through advocacy, they are accelerating global access to life-saving and disability-reversing treatment.

SOURCE Society of Vascular and Interventional Neurology

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