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Operator for stroke interventions
  1. Gabriel Vidal1,
  2. James Milburn2
  1. 1Department of Neurology, Ochsner Clinic Foundation, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
  2. 2Department of Radiology, Ochsner Medical System, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Gabriel Vidal, Department of Neurology, Ochsner Clinic Foundation, New Orleans, LA 5048423000, USA; vidal.gabriel{at}

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The requisites of training for neuroendovascular procedures have been debated. A report by Jennifer Byrne was published in the July/August 2015 issue of Cardiology Today Intervention. In the report, ‘Acute stroke: a new target for endovascular therapy; experience and availability make interventional cardiologists uniquely qualified for acute stroke’, the author summarizes the findings of recent randomized controlled trials for endovascular treatment of acute ischemic stroke and then emphasizes the shortage of providers of neurointerventional stroke treatment. However, this is a controversial topic and many have suggested that too many neurointerventionalists are being trained in the USA.1 ,2 The report suggests that cardiologists should fill this perceived lack of neurointerventionalists by treating patients in small rural hospitals rather than sending them to a stroke center. We believe that this would be a giant leap backwards in quality and safety.

Treatment of strokes in small rural hospitals by individuals with limited training and experience and with support staff who are untrained in neurologic care seems unsafe. This idea undermines the hard work being done by hospitals that obtain both Primary and Comprehensive Stroke Center certifications, …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement Authors are willing to share any available data/documents related to this commentary.