When it's a stroke, every seconds counts. That's why stroke care is a priority at EvergreenHealth.
Our specialized stroke team is ready for action the minute a stroke patient arrives at the Emergency Department. That means treatment begins quickly...improving every stroke patient's chances for recovery.
Successful stroke care involves many hospital departments, all working together following our stroke care protocol.
It begins with the first responders. When paramedics suspect a stroke, they phone ahead to alert the emergency department.
This prompts a chain of events at EvergreenHealth Medical Center that makes the stroke patient a priority.
The stroke team prepares for the patient's arrival. The team includes emergency physicians, neurologists, hospitalists and nurses all with special training in treating stroke.
Interventional radiologists and neurosurgeons are brought in as needed.
Diagnostic imaging prepares for immediate CT scans, with a radiologist on hand to read the results.
The lab prepares to rush blood tests.
Once the patient arrives, the team will work quickly to make a diagnosis and recommend the best treatment.
In appropriate cases, EvergreenHealth's stroke team is available 24/7 to deliver clot-busting medication such as tPA (tissue plasminogen activator), which dissolves clots when given within three hours from the onset of symptoms.
If a stroke is due to bleeding in the brain, neurosurgeons are available 24/7 should surgical intervention be called for.
Blood clots inside the brain are difficult to see and access.
But our advanced biplane imaging technology can produce detailed 3-D images of blood vessels and blood flow in real time.
Using these images, physicians can place a catheter into the brain arteries to find blockages, and immediately begin treatment to remove blood clots and restore blood flow to the areas of the brain impacted by the stroke.
When every minute counts, combining diagnosis and treatment can make all the difference in recovery from stroke.
VIDEO: Dr. David Likosky is interviewed about stroke care and biplane imaging
Once a patient has been treated and stabilized, their recovery will begin in our stroke unit where they will be closely monitored by our team of stroke specialists.
They work together with the rehabilitation staff, social workers and discharge planning nurses to manage each stroke patient's care, from monitoring vital signs and neurological status to providing education about medications, risk factor management, diet and lifestyle changes necessary to prevent secondary strokes.
Our rehabilitation specialists begin working with stroke patients as soon as their condition is stabilized, because the sooner a patient works to regain normal function the quicker that can happen. Learn more about inpatient stroke rehabilitation
While some stroke patients are able to leave the hospital back to normal, many will need some therapy to help them recover function.
Patients who need more close medical monitoring before being discharged home may be admitted to the medical center’s Acute Rehabilitation Unit, where they can receive intensive rehabilitation in a home-like environment. Learn more about the Acute Rehabilitation Unit
After going home, stroke patients will continue their therapy on an outpatient basis through EvergreenHealth Rehabilitation Services, with the goal of returning to work, school and community activities. Learn more about outpatient rehabilitation care
EvergreenHealth Stroke Services is certified as a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission, which means we meet the highest national standards for stroke care.
Our Primary Stroke Center has maintained this prestigious advanced certification annually since 2007.
EvergreenHealth also received the 2018 American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines–Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for the fourth year in a row. This recognizes our stroke program’s commitment and success in providing excellent care to stroke patients - care that makes a difference in how people recover.
As part of our commitment to stroke care, all of our emergency and hospitalist physicians have gone through specialized training from the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale Certification Program. Emergency department and stroke unit nurses receive annual stroke education, to keep updated on the latest guidelines in stroke care.