Tag Archives: Stroke

TeleStroke Program Overcomes Geographical Barriers to Provide Cutting-Edge Neurological Care


Map of Pennsylvania depicting Telestroke Program Regional Partners with a barchart display of the number partnerships from years 2013 to 2016.LionNet
, Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center’s virtual telestroke program, partners with 16 regional hospitals. The telestroke network provides stroke patients rapid access to expert stroke neurologists and neurosurgeons, no matter how remote or rural the community hospital. Stroke patients at a partner site emergency department (ED) are assessed in real-time via audio/ video feed by a stroke neurologist or neurosurgeon at Hershey Medical Center; physicians at both sites can share patient imaging, charts, and test results. Since its July 2012 inception, the program has grown exponentially and more than 5,000 patient consults (approximately 2,000 of which were ischemic stroke patients) have now been performed using LionNet. Continue reading

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Carotid Endarterectomy with Regional Anesthesia

DECREASED STROKE RISK CITED AS PRIMARY BENEFIT OF REGIONAL ANESTHESIA, ESPECIALLY IN OLDER PATIENTS

Carotid endarterectomy (CEA) has long been used in selected patients with carotid stenosis, especially in those with 70 to 99 percent stenosis of the internal carotid artery.1 The majority of those surgeries are performed under general anesthesia; however, an increasing number of neurosurgeons believe that performing the procedure under regional and local anesthesia results in superior outcomes. Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery, Scott Simon, M.D., strongly agrees. In fact, he and Robert Harbaugh, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of Neurosurgery, insist that all CEA patients receive regional anesthesia, in the absence of mitigating factors.

As Simon states, “Most of our patients have already had a stroke, and there’s evidence that putting a brain that’s already been injured under general anesthesia can cause cognitive limitations when the patient wakes up.” When asked about the landmark CREST (Carotid Revascularization Endarterectomy versus Stenting Trial), which appeared to indicate that stenting offers similar outcomes to surgery, Simon points out that the data clearly indicate a much lower risk of postoperative stroke with CEA (2.3 percent versus 4.1 percent with stenting),1 a significant indicator of patient quality of life post-procedure. Further, of more than 2,500 patients in the CREST trial, only 10 percent received regional anesthesia.1 Continue reading

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Penn State Hershey Medical Center Honored with Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award and Stroke Honor Roll

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has recognized Penn State Hershey Medical Center for its high-level care of stroke patients. The Medical Center has received the Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award for the sixth consecutive year by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients.

The award is the highest level of recognition available for treatment of patients with stroke and recognizes Penn State Hershey for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the AHA/ASA for the treatment of stroke patients.

Penn State Hershey also received the association’s Target: Stroke Honor Roll for meeting stroke quality measures that reduce the time between hospital arrival and treatment with the clot-buster tPA.

Penn State Hershey is one of only seven Comprehensive Stroke Centers in Pennsylvania, the only one in Central Pennsylvania, and one of only seventy-eight in the country.

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Telestroke System Emphasizes Partnership with Regional Facilities for Improved Patient Outcomes

Penn State Hershey LionNet telestroke system

Open communication between participants enhances the success of the Penn State Hershey LionNet telestroke system.

Penn State Hershey Medical Center spearheads a sophisticated telestroke system, LionNet, expanding the capabilities of partner hospitals. By exposing more patients to specialized neurological care, LionNet can dramatically increase positive outcomes for patients with both ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke.

Using advanced computer systems with webcams, LionNet allows a Penn State Hershey stroke neurologist or neurosurgeon to consult in real-time with an ED doctor at a partner facility. The specialist examines the patient remotely, reviews scans, and makes a recommendation regarding whether to begin intravenous tPA therapy or transport the patient for possible neurosurgical intervention at Penn State Hershey Medical Center.

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Telestroke partnerships advance stroke care in local communities

LionNet Telestroke Team

L to R: Kevin Cockroft, M.D., Jennifer Humbert, R.N., and Ray Reichwein, M.D.

LionNet, Penn State Hershey’s regional stroke care network, offers real-time video consults with doctors in area emergency departments (EDs) and Penn State Hershey specialists, providing faster diagnosis and treatment of strokes for patients throughout central Pennsylvania.

“When patients come to an ED with suspected stroke, they need immediate evaluation by a specialist who can confirm the diagnosis and make treatment recommendations,” said Jennifer Humbert, R.N., Penn State Hershey LionNet coordinator. Continue reading

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