New device detects strokes

Researchers are testing a new wearable device that can recognize serious strokes where there’s almost total blockage of blood to the brain. By identifying these patients quickly, first responders can direct them immediately to hospitals that offer the advanced emergency care they need to survive.  

On April 17,  Eileen Sherrick’s day started like any other, but ended in an ambulance racing to the hospital. The last thing she remembers is being on the phone with her brother, Dennis. 

“And he said to me, ‘Eileen, you’re not talking right.’ I couldn’t really speak. I went ‘bah,’ and with that I fell right down on the ground," she said.
 
Eileen had a major stroke. A clot was blocking an artery to her brain. Surgeons performed a thrombectomy, using a catheter to quickly remove the clot. Doctors say Eileen was lucky, not every hospital has that expertise.

"They could lose a few hours by going to a center that doesn’t have that capability and time is brain. And every minute counts when you’re treating a patient with stroke," said Christopher Kellner, MD,  a cerebrovascular neurosurgeon at Mt. Sinai Hospital.

Doctor Kellner is testing a device that can quickly tell if a patient is having a major stroke. It’s called volumetric integral phase-shift spectroscopy or VIPS.

“The VIPS device is like an EKG for the brain, except it’s much more accurate than an EKG is," Dr. Kellner explained.
 
The VIPS  is a visor that emits radiofrequency waves. When it’s placed on the head, it detects any differences between the two sides of the brain, indicating a major blockage. While Eileen has made an almost complete recovery, she knows other stroke patients are not always as fortunate.

“It can come on you in the slightest moment," he said.

Researchers say putting VIPS in the hands of first responders, and on the heads of patients could soon save time and lives.

Doctor Kellner said his team found that in a multi-center study, VIPS was 92 percent effective in identifying large strokes from small strokes. Patients having small strokes would not need the same, immediate surgery to restore blood flow, and could benefit from other treatments, like medication.

 
 


Don't Miss

  • Groundhog Day 2018
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Hidden History 2018
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • The Big Game 2018
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • National Catholic Schools Week 2018

Trending Stories

Latest News

Video Center