First neurovascular unit opens at Krembil Neuroscience Centre

April 20, 2017

In addition to in-patient care, the NVU also features Toronto's only day unit for Transient Ischemic Attacks (TIA) and minor strokes, called the TAMS Unit. Traditionally, patients suffering from a TIA or minor stroke who present in a hospital emergency room are either discharged and referred to a stroke prevention clinic or admitted to hospital (averaging a stay of up to three days). The stroke team at the Krembil Neuroscience Centre identified a more effective way of treating these patients by creating a rapid assessment day unit.

"The key to caring for these patients is getting tests done urgently to identify conditions that predispose patients to a higher risk of stroke and that warrant specific treatments, or to confirm there is no imminent danger of a major stroke. Furthermore, it is important that we educate patients about stroke and stroke prevention, including lifestyle changes and treatments for stroke risk factors," said Dr. Leanne Casaubon, neurologist and lead for the TAMS Unit development. "The TAMS Unit provides same day diagnostic tests, treatment and education while avoiding unnecessary hospital admissions."

Timely care is especially important for these patients because TIAs and minor strokes are often the first warning sign of a potentially catastrophic major stroke. According to data from the Registry of the Canadian Stroke Network, almost 10 percent of patients presenting with a TIA have a subsequent stroke within a month, and half of the cases of stroke occurred within the first two days after the TIA.

"As a regional stoke centre in Toronto and as a hospital that takes in some of the most complex neurosurgeries for cerebrovascular conditions in Canada, we have a chance to implement innovative changes that could impact how hospitals around the world care for these patients," said Mary Ann Neary, Clinical Director of the Krembil Neuroscience Centre.

Source: Krembil Neuroscience Centre

©2017 -