Study finds paramedics skilled in identifying strokes
Results were presented at the 64th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans
Health Daily Digest
NEW ORLEANS — Stroke risk suspected by paramedics is probably right as a paramedic is able to diagnose stroke patients with a 99.3 percent specificity, suggested a study that will be presented at the 64th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans.
A paramedic is a healthcare expert that works in emergency medical situations and provides advanced levels of care for medical emergencies and trauma. Paramedics provide out-of-hospital treatment and some diagnostic services.
Loyola University researchers assessed data of 5,300 patients who were transported to the emergency room by emergency medical services.
They found that the Paramedics diagnosed stroke patients with a high specificity and indicated that there is an increased possibility of having the disease.
One of the researchers stated that if a paramedic doubts that a patient is having a stroke then it means it should be a reliable indicator.
A stroke is the rapid loss of brain function(s) due blood clots in the brain.
As a result, the affected area of the brain cannot function. If a clot-busting drug tPA given quickly, then it can dissolve the clot and stop the stroke before it causes permanent damage. However, before undergoing tPA treatment, a patient must undertake a CT scan test to confirm the stroke is caused by a clot.
Another researcher stated that hospitals are determined to reduce the "door-to-needle" time in which the length of time counts when a stroke patient arrives at the emergency room door until the patient is given intravenous tPA.
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