Editors' Note: Association of Initial Imaging Modality and Futile Recanalization After Thrombectomy

In “Association of Initial Imaging Modality and Futile Recanalization After Thrombectomy,” Meinel et al. reported that the rate of futile recanalization (defined as 90-day modified Rankin Scale (mRS) score 4–6 despite successful recanalization) among patients enrolled in the BEYOND-SWIFT multicenter, retrospective observational registry was significantly higher in patients selected for thrombectomy based on a CT scan as compared with patients selected for thrombectomy based on an MRI. Siegler and Thon cautioned that these findings should not dissuade against (1) use of a CT scan to determine eligibility for thrombectomy because this could lead to unnecessary delays in care or (2) performance of thrombectomy after CT scans because the imaging modality itself does not directly affect outcome and 40% of patients selected for thrombectomy based on a CT scan had a good 90-day mRS score (which represents a 22%–27% absolute increase compared with patients treated with medical management in the DAWN and DEFUSE-3 trials). Meinel et al agreed that it is imperative to avoid delays before thrombectomy and reinforced that their findings should not influence the selection of imaging modality for potential thrombectomy candidates. They also pointed out that implementation of high-speed MRI protocols should be considered to obtain more detailed information than a CT scan can provide while avoiding lengthy delays between imaging and groin puncture.

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