Stroke ‘Alarm Clock’ Improves Acute Stroke Management Metrics

THURSDAY, Sept. 24, 2020 — Use of a stroke alarm clock demanding active feedback significantly improves management metrics for acute stroke, according to a study published online Sept. 24 in Stroke.

Mathias Fousse, M.D., from the Saarland University Medical Center in Homburg, Germany, and colleagues conducted a randomized study in which a large-display alarm clock was installed in the computed tomography room. Alarms were set for 15, 25, and 30 minutes after admission for completion of the neurological examination, completion of computed tomography and international normalized ratio determination, and initiation of intravenous thrombolysis. Feedback had to be provided by pressing a buzzer button; if the button was pressed before time ran out, the alarm could be avoided.

The researchers found better stroke management metrics for the 51 stroke-clock patients versus the 56 control patients. There were improvements noted in the times from door to end of all indicated diagnostic work-up (treatment decision time, 16.73 versus 26.00 minutes); end of neurological examination (7.28 versus 10.00 minutes); end of computed tomography (11.17 versus 14.00 minutes); end of computed tomography angiography (14.00 versus 17.17 minutes); end of point-of-care laboratory testing (12.14 versus 20.00 minutes); and needle times (18.83 versus 47.00 minutes). There was no significant difference observed in door-to-groin puncture times and functional outcomes at day 90.

“The stroke alarm clock is a low-cost intervention and an efficient way to quickly deliver life-saving treatment to acute stroke patients,” a coauthor said in a statement.

One author disclosed financial ties to the medical device industry.

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