Q: WHAT IS THE TIME WINDOW FOLLOWING
A STROKE WHEN A THROMBECTOMY CAN BE
PERFORMED AND STILL BENEFIT THE PATIENT?
A: Until recently, the time window was six hours
or less. But studies show that thrombectomy can
be beneficial up to 24 hours after stroke symptoms
begin. Nevertheless, the sooner a person recognizes
and gets help for stroke, the better the outcome. The
key is to call 911 immediately. But the expanded window
means better stroke care for more people.
W I N T E R 2 0 2 1 7
ADVANCED STROKE CARE
Interventional neurology offers expanded options for
the treatment of stroke and other conditions affecting
Habibullah Ziayee, MD, a fellowship-trained interventional neurologist
with expertise in the minimally invasive treatment of acute ischemic stroke
and brain aneurysm, recently joined the staff of Winchester Neurological
Consultants | Valley Health and provides care at Winchester Medical Center.
Below he answers questions about his lifesaving medical specialty.
Q: WHAT IS AN INTERVENTIONAL NEUROLOGIST?
A: Interventional neurologists use minimally invasive techniques to treat
abnormalities of blood vessels in the brain, neck and spine. We work
inside blood vessels instead of performing open surgical procedures. This
allows us to reach areas of the brain that can’t be treated easily or at all
with conventional brain surgery or where open surgery would severely
disrupt brain tissue.
Q: WHAT COMMON CONDITIONS DO INTERVENTIONAL
A: The most frequent condition we treat is stroke. This includes ischemic
stroke, the most common type, caused by a blood clot in an artery in the
brain, and hemorrhagic stroke, caused by bleeding due to a tear in a blood
vessel in the brain. Interventional neurology allows us to remove the clot
causing an ischemic stroke in many cases. This procedure, called thrombectomy,
restores blood flow and can save brain tissue.
Another condition I treat is aneurysm—a weakening and out-pouching
of a blood vessel in the brain. Treating an aneurysm by using interventional
neurology techniques can prevent a rupture and dangerous or even deadly
bleeding in the brain.
Q: WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES FOR PATIENTS IN OUR REGION?
A: Interventional neurology offers possibilities that weren’t available in the
past. Twenty or 30 years ago, there wasn’t much that doctors could do to
stop a stroke. Now we can intervene. The procedures we do work directly
on the problem without disturbing other tissues of the brain or body.
STROKE? BE FAST.
Use the letters in BE FAST to recognize stroke
symptoms and get help immediately:
B: Balance. Sudden loss of balance.
E: Eyes. Blurred, double vision or loss of vision in
one or both eyes.
F: Face drooping or numbness on one side.
A: Arm weakness or numbness on one side.
S: Speech that is slurred, hard to understand or
the inability to speak.
T: Time. Call 911 immediately for any of these
symptoms, even if they go away.