Newcastle researchers say they have had a significant breakthrough in treating stroke patients using a commonly used drug, with some people showing "Lazarus-like" recoveries.The findings published in the New England Medical Journal show, in some cases, stroke victims using a drug called Tenecteplase making almost miraculous recoveries within days.
One of the study's authors, Dr Neil Spratt from John Hunter Hospital, says the drug is commonly used for heart treatment, but preliminary results show it also helps stroke victims.
The three-year study was trialled on 75 patients.
"We did a trial comparing it to the existing drug that we use to dissolve blood clots in stroke, and the results, I think, even surprised us in how positive they were," Dr Spratt said.
He says before the study the drug had never been tested properly for stroke victims.
After suffering a stroke, the speed at which a blood clot can be dissolved in a patient is critical in treatment.
Dr Spratt says there were a number of patients who had "Lazarus-like responses" to the new drug, with some patients on their feet within an hour of taking it.
"People who came in really completely paralyzed - one of my patients, a young woman, came in completely paralyzed down one side of her body and unable to speak - and an hour after receiving the drug she essentially has normal strength and normal speech, and she's gone on to do fantastically well," he said.Read on..,.,