Author(s): Patrick D. Lyden
It often takes time for a new therapeutic modality to mature into an accepted treatment option. After initial approval, new drugs, devices, and procedures all go through this process until they become vetted by the scientific community as well as the medical community at large. Thrombolysis for treatment of stroke is no exception. Thrombolytic Therapy for Acute Stroke, Second Edition comes four years after the first edition and provides a very comprehensive, updated perspective on the use of intravenous rt-TPA in acute stroke. The authors provide longer term follow-up on the pivotal clinical trials that led to Food and Drug Administration approval, data concerning phase 4 trials in larger numbers of patients, and, most importantly, the community experience that has accumulated since its release. They add to this the latest promising information concerning intra-arterial thrombolysis, which is still under investigation and more speculative sections concerning possible new avenues of clinical research such as combining intravenous thr- bolysis with neuroprotective therapies or intra-arterial thrombolysis. A wealth of factual information is supplemented by chapters containing sage opinion from Drs. Lyden and Caplan concerning the logistical, economic, and procedural issues that have been generated since the advent of this technology. Importantly, diagnosis does not take a back seat to therapeutics as illustrated by sections devoted to eva- ation of the stroke patient, very useful illustrative cases and clinical comments, and chapters on the latest in imaging as applied to this field.