The clot-busting stroke drug is safe and effective, claims a group of medical researchers. They also suggested that the benefits of the drug actually outweigh the risks.
The study revealed that the best time to give the patients clot busting drug 'alteplase' is up to four and a half hours after the start of symptoms.
An Independent expert panel, chaired by Sir Ian Weller, said that the panel had looked at all available data on alteplase and decided that the earlier the drug was given to patients, the greater the chance of a good outcome was expected.
The benefits of alteplase were found to outweigh the risks, if it was used up to four and a half hours after the start of the symptoms, but in a small number of people, there was a risk of haemorrhage.
Weller explained that the evidence showed that for every 100 patients treated with alteplase, while there is an early risk of a fatal bleed in two patients, after three to six months, around 10 more in every 100 are disability-free when treated within three hours. Weller added that five more patients in every 100 are left with no disabilities when treated between three and four-and-a-half hours after a stroke.