Research Summary

Early Remote Ischaemic Conditioning in Stroke (ERICS) Study

Despite best medical management, high-risk transient ischaemic attack (TIA) and acute ischaemic stroke are associated with early neurological deterioration (END), recurrent strokes and death. Furthermore, the risk of END and recurrent stroke is highest in the first week persists for 12 weeks. Remote ischaemic conditioning (RIC) involves brief-cyclic ischaemia and reperfusion of a distant organ (upper arm muscles) to protect at-risk (cerebral tissue) organ tissue by increasing ischaemia tolerance. RIC has been studied well as a cardioprotection strategy in patients with coronary artery disease. However, its role in stroke patients remains unknown.

We hypothesize early RIC therapy for 12 weeks in high risk TIA/acute ischaemic stroke patients will lead to reduction in rates of infarct growth and recurrent infarcts at 12 weeks. We propose to do this in two-part study. In phase IIa, study we will assess the feasibility and safety of early RIC in high-risk ischaemic stroke stroke patients. In the phase IIb, study we will assess efficacy of early RIC.

TIA/mild-moderate strokes account for >70% of all cerebrovascular admissions. RIC therapy may represent an economical and easily administered medical intervention that may reduce infarct growth and recurrent events, ultimately improving stroke outcomes.