Purpose of Review: Acute ischemic stroke (AIS) can have profound and devastating effects on the CNS and several other organs. Approximately 15% to 20% of patients with AIS are admitted to an intensive care unit and cared for by a multidisciplinary team. This article discusses the critical care management of patients with AIS.
Recent Findings: Patients with AIS require attention to airway, pulmonary status, blood pressure, glucose, temperature, cardiac function, and, sometimes, life-threatening cerebral edema.
Summary: The lack of disease-specific data has led to numerous management approaches and limited guidance on choosing among them. Existing guidelines emphasize risk factors, prevention, natural history, and prevention of bleeding but provide little discussion of the complex critical care issues involved in caring for patients with AIS.
Address correspondence to Dr William Coplin, Wayne State University, Departments of Neurology and Neurological Surgery, 4201 St. Antoine–8C, Detroit, MI 48201, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Relationship Disclosure: Dr Coplin serves as a consultant and/or speaker for Boehringer Ingelheim, EKR Therapeutics, Inc., Integra LifeSciences Corporation, and Medivance, and receives grant support from the NIH.
Unlabeled Use of Products/Investigational Use Disclosure: Dr Coplin discusses the unlabeled use of medications in the treatment of acute ischemic stroke. All unlabeled uses are clearly described in the article.