Treatments for acute ischaemic stroke continue to evolve. Experimental approaches to restore cerebral perfusion include techniques to augment recanalising therapies, including combination of antiplatelet agents with intravenous thrombolysis, bridging therapy of combining intravenous with intra-arterial thrombolysis, and trials of new thrombolytic agents. Trials with MRI selection criteria are underway to expand the window of opportunity for thrombolysis. Sonothrombolysis and novel endovascular mechanical devices to retrieve or dissolve acute cerebral occlusions are being tested. Approaches to improve cerebral perfusion with other devices and induced hypertension are also being considered. Although numerous neuroprotective agents have not shown benefit, trials of hypothermia, magnesium, caffeinol, high doses of statins, and albumin are continuing. The findings of these randomised trials are anticipated to allow improved treatment of patients with acute stroke.
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