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Dash to help - new app to improve stroke treatment
Date:2/17/2012

The Newcastle team who helped develop the FAST system to identify a stroke are now piloting an app to ensure the best treatment for stroke patients.

Having developed the FAST acronym face, arms, speech and time which has been seen on TV ads, the University and NHS team are now trying out an app to help people who have had a stroke and their medical team work out which course of treatment is most suitable for them.

Its potential benefits have caught the attention of the national NHS after the team were nominated by a public vote as one of the top 50 uses of technology. The app will be demonstrated to the Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, at the Maps and Apps Showcase in London (on Weds 22nd Feb).

From the moment people suffer a stroke medics only have a four and a half hour window to treat them with clot busting drugs and this means doctors, nurses, the patient and their families need to have a clear idea of the treatment options so they can make a considered but rapid decision.

An iPad app, called DASH II, is being trialled in Newcastle and North Tyneside hospitals to help weigh up the risks and benefits of different treatments for people who have had an ischaemic stroke, caused by a blood clot on the brain. The development of the DASH II app has been funded by a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Programme Grant.

Newcastle University's Professor Gary Ford who is a stroke specialist at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, part of the Newcastle NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust, said "Every minute counts. We know that the earlier we give clot busting drugs after stroke the more likely the patient will make a full recovery and return home. There is a small risk of bleeding with the drugs and it is important we support patients to make the best decision for them about whether to have treatment.

"Patients and their families are often very distressed immediately after a stroke and we nee
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Contact: Karen Bidewell
press.office@ncl.ac.uk
44-019-122-26972
Newcastle University
Source:Eurekalert  

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