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Original research
Imaging criteria across pivotal randomized controlled trials for late window thrombectomy patient selection


Background The DAWN and DEFUSE-3 trials showed the benefit of endovascular treatment (EVT) in acute ischemic stroke patients presenting beyond 6 hours from last known well (LKW) and selected by perfusion imaging criteria. The ESCAPE NA1-trial selected patients based on non-contrast CT (NCCT) Alberta Stroke Program Early CT Score (ASPECTS) and multiphase CT angiography (CTA) collateral status. This study compares baseline characteristics, workflow, and outcomes in the EVT arms of DAWN and DEFUSE-3 with late-window patients from the EVT-only arm of ESCAPE-NA1.

Methods Aggregate data on baseline characteristics, workflow, reperfusion quality, final infarct volume, and clinical outcomes (modified Rankin Score [mRS] at 90 days) in subjects enrolled in the DAWN and DEFUSE-3 EVT arms were compared with similar data from the ESCAPE-NA1 control arm (EVT-only arm) presenting beyond 6 hours from LKW using descriptive statistics.

Results Baseline characteristics among late-window patients in the ESCAPE NA1 trial were similar to those in the DAWN and DEFUSE-3 EVT arms. Median time from LKW-to-puncture in subjects enrolled in the ESCAPE NA1 trial was 9 hrs (IQR: 7.5–11 hours) when compared with DAWN (n=107; 12.8 hours, IQR: 10.6–16.7 hours) and DEFUSE-3 (n=92; 11.5 hours, IQR: 9.2–12.8 hours). Median post-treatment infarct-volume was largest in the ESCAPE NA1-patients (47 mL [IQR: 19–146] vs median 8 mL [IQR: 0–48] in the DAWN group and 35 mL [IQR: 18–82] in DEFUSE-3), while % mRS 0–2 at 90 days were similar across the three trials (ESCAPE NA1: 50/111 [45%], DAWN: 52/107 [49%], DEFUSE-3: 41/92 [45%]).

Conclusion Patients enrolled beyond 6 hours from LKW in the ESCAPE-NA1 trial based on NCCT-ASPECTS and mCTA had similar clinical outcomes when compared with patients selected by perfusion imaging in the DAWN and DEFUSE-3 trials.

  • stroke
  • CT
  • CT angiography
  • CT perfusion

Data availability statement

Data are available upon reasonable request. The data underlying the analyses in this manuscript will be made available by the corresponding author upon reasonable request and after approval by the ESCAPE NA1 investigators.

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