Safety of Intravenous Thrombolysis for Acute Ischemic Stroke in Patients with Thrombocytopenia

Yifeng Yang, Baoqiong Liu, Lingling Wu, Xuan Guan, Yiming Luo, Changchuan Jiang, Sonali Gupta, Zhihua Huang, George Everett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background: Intravenous thrombolysis with recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rtPA) is an effective treatment of acute ischemic stroke (AIS). The safety of intravenous rtPA in patients with thrombocytopenia is unclear. This study sought to evaluate the impact of thrombocytopenia on in-hospital outcomes in patients with AIS who received intravenous thrombolysis. Methods: This was a retrospective study using the 2012-2014 National Inpatient Sample (20% stratified sample of US hospitals). The study identified adult patients admitted with AIS who received intravenous rtPA during hospitalization. The identified admissions were stratified into 2 cohorts based on the presence or absence of thrombocytopenia. Multilevel, multivariate regression analysis and propensity matching were performed to evaluate in-hospital mortality, length of stay, and in-hospital complications. Results: Of 101,527 patients admitted for AIS and received intravenous rtPA from 2012 to 2014, 3,520 (3.47%) had thrombocytopenia. In-hospital mortality was 10.8 vs. 6.9% in patients with and without thrombocytopenia in original data, p < 0.001. In-hospital length of stay was significantly higher in the thrombocytopenia group (5.9 vs. 8.2 days, p < 0.001). The differences were significant in both the multivariate regression model and the propensity score matching model. Patients with thrombocytopenia also had a statistically higher incidence of intracranial hemorrhage, postprocedural bleeding, blood transfusion, tracheotomy, and mechanical ventilation. Conclusion: Thrombocytopenia is associated with higher in-hospital mortality, longer length of stay, a higher incidence of intracranial hemorrhage, postprocedural bleeding, and mechanical ventilation in stroke patients who received intravenous rtPA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-164
Number of pages8
JournalCerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number3-6
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • In-hospital outcomes
  • Intravenous recombinant tissue plasminogen activator
  • Ischemic stroke
  • Thrombocytopenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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