Mechanical thrombectomy (MT) represents the mainstay of treatment for patients with acute ischemic stroke due to large-vessel occlusion (LVO). Intravenous thrombolysis has been associated with worse clinical outcome in patients presenting with high blood glucose levels at admission; to date the true effect of hyperglycemia in the setting of MT has not been fully elucidated. In this meta-analysis, we analyzed the influence of high blood glucose levels at admission on clinical outcome after MT. Ovid EMBASE, PubMed, Scopus, and Cochrane Library databases were searched from their dates of inception up to March 2021. An initial search identified 2118 articles representing 1235 unique studies. After applying selection criteria, three prospective and five retrospective studies were analyzed, yielding a pooled cohort of 5861 patients (2041 who presented with hyperglycemia, and 3820 who presented with normal blood glucose levels). Patients in the hyperglycemia group were less likely to have a modified Ranking Scale (mRS) score <3 (risk ratio (RR): 0.65; 95% CI 0.59 to 0.72; p<0.0001; I2=13%), and had an increased risk of symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (sICH) (RR: 2.07; 95% CI 1.65 to 2.60; p<0.0001; I2=0%) and mortality (RR: 1.73; 95% CI 1.57 to 1.91; p<0.0001; I2=0%). Patients who present with hyperglycemia and undergo MT for treatment of LVO have an increased risk of unfavorable clinical outcome, sICH, and mortality. Glucose levels at admission appear to be a prognostic factor in this subset of patients. Further studies should focus on evaluating control of the glucose level at admission as a modifiable risk factor in patients undergoing MT for LVO.
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