Stroke ranks third among reasons for acute death, first for neurological dysfunction, and is considered the most costly disease in western world health care. Approx 85% of all strokes are ischemic (IS; obstructed blood flow), for which early intravenous thrombolysis is an established procedure. However, only a fraction of patients that could benefit from such treatment actually receives it. Before administering thrombolytic treatment, intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) as an alternative stroke mechanism needs to be ruled out with a brain scan, calling for time-consuming transport to hospitals. Today, the majority of stroke patients reach a diagnosis to late to be safely treated with thrombolysis. After several years of computer modelling and phantom experiments, our research group has recently published two clinical proof-of-concept studies demonstrating that microwave-based brain tomography (MBT) can differentiate ICH from IS in stroke patients. The relative simplicity of this technique makes it possible to perform in ambulances and other pre-hospital environments. We are now planning several multi-center studies with national and international partners, involving both ambulance- and hospital-based MBT instruments, testing the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of this pioneering technique for identifying ICH. Our aim is to improve triage and treatment of stroke and TBI patients, one ultimate goal being to enable safe pre-hospital initiation of trombolytic treatment.
Forskarassistent at Signals and Systems, Biomedical Electromagnetics
Funding years 2015–2017