Stroke? Here is a mobile unit to assist you

COIMBATORE: District collector T N Hariharan flagged off a state of the art mobile stroke unit of Kovai Medical Centre and Hospital (KMCH) here on Saturday.

KMCH chairman Nalla G Palaniswami said the unit has a specialised ambulance with a doctor, nurse, emergency personnel and computed tomography (CT) technologist and it would play a crucial role in treating patients within the first three hours of stroke.

The unit also contains a lab testing equipment and a CT scanner. The CT scans are wirelessly transmitted to neuroradiologists at the hospital, who along with a neurologist, would decide if the patient is experiencing a stroke, and if so, whether the stroke is caused by a blocked blood clot (ischaemic) or by a ruptured blood vessel (hemorrhagic).

Blood samples would be tested in the unit itself and if it is found that the patient was experiencing an ischemic stroke, which account for about 80% of all strokes, the on-board medical team can initiate intravenous clot bustering drugs immediately.

If the patient shows no recovery by the time s/he reaches the emergency, s/he would require the next level of treatment.

At the launch event, inspector general of police (west zone) A Pari inaugurated a stroke unit hotline number while city commissioner of police K Periaiah launched a mobile app for stroke. City corporation commissioner K Vijayakarthikeyan launched the stroke ICU.