Nationwide Propensity Score–Matched Follow-Up Study
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Data on long-term outcome after intravenous tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA) in ischemic stroke are limited. We examined the risk of long-term mortality, recurrent ischemic stroke, and major bleeding, including intracranial and gastrointestinal bleeding, in intravenous tPA-treated patients when compared with intravenous tPA eligible but nontreated patients with ischemic stroke. METHODS: We conducted a register-based nationwide propensity score-matched follow-up study among patients with ischemic stroke in Denmark (2004-2011). Cox regression analysis was used to compute adjusted hazard ratios for all outcomes. RESULTS: Among 4292 ischemic strokes (2146 intravenous tPA-treated and 2146 propensity score-matched nonintravenous tPA-treated patients), with a follow-up for a median of 1.4 years, treatment with intravenous tPA was associated with a lower risk of long-term mortality (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.66; 95% confidence interval, 0.49-0.88). The long-term risk of recurrent ischemic stroke (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.05; 95% confidence interval, 0.68-1.64) and major bleeding (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.59; 95% confidence interval, 0.24-1.47) did not differ significantly between the intravenous tPA-treated and nontreated patients. CONCLUSIONS: Treatment with intravenous tPA in patients with ischemic stroke was associated with improved long-term survival.