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Original research
Rapid learning curve for Solitaire FR stent retriever therapy: evidence from roll-in and randomised patients in the SWIFT trial
  1. Sunil A Sheth1,
  2. Reza Jahan1,
  3. Elad I Levy2,
  4. Tudor G Jovin3,
  5. Blaise Baxter4,
  6. Raul G Nogueira5,
  7. Wayne Clark6,
  8. Ronald Budzik7,
  9. Osama O Zaidat8,
  10. Jeffrey L Saver9
  11. for the SWIFT Trialists
  1. 1Department of Radiology and Stroke Center, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
  2. 2Department of Neurosurgery, Millard Fillmore Hospital, Buffalo, New York, USA
  3. 3Department of Neurology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
  4. 4Department of Radiology, Erlanger Hospital, Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA
  5. 5Department of Neurology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  6. 6Department of Neurology, Oregon Health Science University, Portland, Oregon, USA
  7. 7Department of Radiology, Riverside Methodist Hospital, Columbus, Ohio, USA
  8. 8Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
  9. 9Department of Neurology and Stroke Center, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Reza Jahan, Division of Interventional Neuroradiology, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, 757 Westwood Plaza, Suite 2129, Los Angeles, CA 90095-7430, USA; rjahan{at}


Background In light of recent positive trial data for endovascular therapy in acute ischemic stroke (AIS), stent retriever use by practitioners without prior experience with these devices may become more common.

Objective To assess the safety and efficacy of thrombectomy for AIS using Solitaire for patients treated in the roll-in period of the Solitaire With the Intention For Thrombectomy (SWIFT) trial, which represented the first clinical use of the device for these interventionalists.

Methods Prospectively collected demographic, clinical, and angiographic data on patients treated in the initial roll-in and subsequent randomized phases of the SWIFT study were collected and analyzed. Key statistical analyses were validated by an independent external statistician.

Results Patients in the roll-in period achieved equivalently high rates of reperfusion (55%) compared with those treated with the device in the randomized phase (61%). Rates of adverse events were comparable (13% vs 9%). Rates of good neurological outcome were equivalent between the roll-in and randomized patients treated with Solitaire (63% vs 58%). Including the roll-in patients strengthened the conclusions of the study, that reperfusion rates without symptomatic hemorrhage with Solitaire were greater than with Merci (59% vs 24%, p<0.001).

Conclusions Thrombectomy in AIS using the Solitaire stent retriever device can be performed safely and effectively when used by experienced neurointerventionalists without previous experience with the device.

Trial registration number The SWIFT study is registered with, number NCT 01054560.

  • Stroke
  • Angiography
  • Intervention
  • Technique
  • Thrombectomy

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