Glasgow University researchers have said that a new drug holds considerable promise in cutting down the complications that arise after a stroke. The reserachers arrived at this conclusion after testing this drug on 1,700 patients in 154 hospitals across the world.
The treatment, called NXY-059, reduces the amount of brain damage that occurs just after the patient has suffered a clot-related stroke, which is caused by a blockage in the blood vessels that supply the brain. Complications of such a stroke include facial weakness, arm weakness and speech problems. In the current study, patients who were admitted into the hospital within six hours of developing a stroke were examines and 50 percent of them received normal fluids, while the others received fluids as well as NXY-059. Patients who were given this new drug were more likely to have made a full recovery from stroke after three months, said lead researcher Professor Kennedy Lees. Their odds of avoiding disability were about 20% better if they were given NXY-059. This trial opens up new horizons for treatment of one of the most important conditions affecting our society. He added that the availability of the drug meant that patients could be given treatment three hours after the symptoms of a stroke developed. The reserachers also said that this drug could also reduce the bleeding associated with clot dissolving drugs. Stroke is one of the leading causes of death and disability worldwide and this treatment has opened up new avenues in the treatment of the condition. Commenting on the new study, David Clark, chief executive of the charity Chest said, About half of all stroke survivors have some significant disability, so anything which reduces this disability is potentially of great benefit, especially as this has the potential to be developed as a routine treatment in all stroke units.