Cerebrospinal Fluid Drainage (CSFD) in Acute Spinal Cord Injury
Acute spinal cord injury (SCI) affects 10,000-14,000 persons per year in the United States (Burke, Linden et al. 2001). There are 150,000-300,000 persons living with significant disabilities from SCI at any given time (Bernhard, Gries et al. 2005).
The average age of incident cases of SCI is 47 years and about 78% of the cases are males (DeVivo and Chen 2011). Estimates of the lifetime costs to care for someone with a SCI range from $325,000 to $1.35 million and the yearly cost to society reaches $8 billion (Sekhon and Fehlings 2001). With better long term care technologies, these costs are expected to continue to rise.
Although there have been significant advances in accessibility for people with disabilities, the goal of medical science is to overcome the physiological barriers imposed by the injury itself and allow these individuals to regain their pre-injury level of neurological function (Rowland, Hawryluk et al. 2008). The injury to the spinal cord occurs in two phases. The first phase is the primary physical damage due to the impact energy of the compressive nature of the injury. The damage can be very complex with shearing of the axons, destruction of the cell bodies and disruption of the microvasculature at the site of injury.
The secondary phase of the injury begins soon after the primary injury has occurred and can be influenced by many factors such as hypoxia, hypotension, and the extent of the primary injury. Spinal cord ischemia post-injury causes a significant increase in cell death and more significant neurological disability. Limiting tissue hypoperfusion post-injury can decrease the amount of cell death and axonal damage.
Lumbar cerebrospinal fluid drainage (CSFD) together with increased mean arterial blood pressure (MAP) in the immediate post-injury period can reduce spinal cord tissue hypoperfusion. By reducing spinal cord hypoperfusion through elevation of MAP, less cell death and axonal damage will occur, leading to an improvement in neurological function.
The feasibility of CSFD as a means for reducing the intrathecal pressure (ITP) in patients with acute SCI has been demonstrated in a small randomized controlled trial by Kwon et al (Kwon, Curt et al. 2009). The limitations were a small sample size, broad inclusion criteria, lack of statistical power calculation and restricted drainage regimen (maximum 10 mL per hour).
Carotid Revascularization and Medical Management for Asymptomatic Carotid Stenosis Trial (CREST-2)
Prevention of stroke involves managing and treating risk factors. Most strokes are caused when blood flow to a portion of the brain is blocked. One place this often happens is in the carotid artery. This blockage is called atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries.
The purpose of this trial is to determine the best way to prevent strokes in people who have a high amount of blockage of their carotid artery but no stroke symptoms related to that blockage. Each eligible participant will be evaluated to determine which procedure(s) is best for him/her. All participants will receive intensive medical treatment. In addition, participants will be randomized to receive the selected procedure or not.
The trial will be conducted in the United States and Canada by physicians carefully selected on their ability to perform the procedures at low risk. Another key component of the trial is that important stroke risk factors, including hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, cigarette smoking, physical activity, and diet will be managed intensively. Participants will remain in the study for 4 years.
Lu AE58054 in Patients With Mild-moderate Alzheimer’s Disease Treated With Donepezil (STARBEAM)
To establish efficacy of Lu AE58054 as adjunctive therapy to donepezil for symptomatic treatment of patients with mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s disease (AD).
Vagus Nerve Stimulation Titration Protocol to Improve Tolerance and Accelerate Adaptation (ASCEND)
Post-market, on-label, double-blind, randomized, prospective, interventional, tolerability and clinical outcomes study is designed to determine which VNS Therapy titration paradigm allows more patients to achieve a therapeutic dose within a specified time frame. Additionally, the study will collect data on the acute tolerability and clinical outcomes for patients with drug-resistant epilepsy treated with adjunctive VNS Therapy employing three different titration paradigms.