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Reanalysis of alteplase for stroke stirs controversy

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 07 October 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:820
  1. Jeanne Lenzer
  1. New York

    An independent panel, appointed by a leading US institute to reanalyse the data regarding stroke treatment, has published its findings which they say support the use of thrombolytic agent alteplase (tPA, also known as rt-PA) “to treat patients with acute ischaemic stroke within three hours of onset under the NINDS [National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke] tPA trial protocol.”

    Data was reanalysed after an article in the BMJ (2002;324:723-9) sparked off controversy. The original study data reviewed by the panel was published in the New England Journal of Medicine more than nine years ago (1995;333:1581-7).

    Critics take issue, however, with the printed conclusions of the analysis published in this month's issue of Stroke (2004;35:2418-24).

    Jerome Hoffman, professor of medicine and emergency medicine at the University of California in Los Angeles and a leading critic of calls for widespread use of thrombolysis for stroke, …

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