It is possible that magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) targets – rather than symptom severity – could be used to better triage patients with minor acute ischemic stroke (mAIS) for intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (IV tPA) therapy. Randomized trials are needed to investigate this further.
Why this matters
People with mild symptoms of ischemic stroke are at risk of neurological deterioration and disability. It remains unclear whether mAIS patients without clearly disabling symptoms could also benefit from IV tPA therapy.
An increase in rapid magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) screening of patients with suspected mAIS has led to the observation that the presence of MRI targets is independent from symptom severity and could be a useful tool for targeted IV tPA treatment.