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Original research
Frontline ADAPT therapy to treat patients with symptomatic M2 and M3 occlusions in acute ischemic stroke: initial experience with the Penumbra ACE and 3MAX reperfusion system
  1. Jens Altenbernd1,
  2. Oliver Kuhnt1,
  3. Svenja Hennigs2,
  4. Ruediger Hilker3,
  5. Christian Loehr1
  1. 1Department of Radiology and Neuroradiology, Klinikum Vest Knappschaftskrankenhaus Recklinghausen, Recklinghausen, Germany
  2. 2Department of Radiology and Neuroradiology, Knappschaftskrankenhaus Bottrop, Bottrop, Germany
  3. 3Department of Neurology, Klinikum Vest Knappschaftskrankenhaus Recklinghausen, Recklinghausen, Germany
  1. Correspondence to Dr Jens Altenbernd, Department of Radiology, Neuroradiology and Nuclear Medicine, Knappschaftskrankenhaus Recklinghausen – Klinikum Vest, Dorstener Straße 151, Recklinghausen 45657, Germany; jens.altenbernd{at}


Background After a series of positive studies for mechanical thrombectomy in large vessel occlusion acute ischemic stroke, the question remains, can symptomatic patients with distal vessel occlusion benefit from mechanical thrombectomy?

Purpose To assess the safety and efficacy of the 3MAX reperfusion system as frontline therapy for M2 and M3 occlusions.

Methods This study retrospectively collected data on 58 patients treated for M2 and M3 occlusions between January and September 2016. Of these 58 patients, 31 had an isolated M2 or M3 occlusion. Eligible patients were treated with 3MAX by adirect first pass aspiration (ADAPT) technique within 6 hours following stroke onset. Effectiveness was defined by functional independence (90-day modified Rankin Scale core 0–2) and revascularization to modified Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction (mTICI) 2b–3 scores adjudicated by a core laboratory, while complication rates were used to determine safety of the device and the procedure.

Results Patients with an isolated M2 or M3 occlusion had a mean age of 68.6±13.3 years (range 18–90 years), a median National Institutes of Health Stroke Score of 15 (IQR 9–19), and ASPECTS score of 9 (IQR 8–10). After intervention, 100% (31/31) of patients were revascularized to mTICI 2b–3; 77.4% (24/31) of patients showed revascularization to mTICI 3. Aspiration alone led to revascularization in 83.9% (26/31) of patients. At 90 days, 96.8% (30/31) of patients had achieved functional independence. The incidence of symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage was 0% (0/31).

Conclusions Results suggest that the 3MAX reperfusion system is safe and effective in achieving successful revascularization and functional independence for patients with acute ischemic stroke secondary to M2 and M3 occlusions using ADAPT, either as frontline monotherapy, or in combination with adjunctive devices.

  • acute ischemic stroke
  • aspiration thrombectomy
  • endovascular therapy
  • distal occlusion

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  • Contributors All authors made a substantial, direct, and intellectual contribution to the work.

  • Competing interests JA: Travel support for presentation at congresses, PENUMBRA; J-OK, SH, RH, CL: None.

  • Ethics approval Ruhr-University-Bochum.

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

  • Data sharing statement There are no additional unpublished data available.