In the New England Journal of Medicine: Clínica Alemana neurologists participated in breakthrough study
The “Headpost” research was conducted on stroke patients admitted in 114 hospitals around the world.
The results of the Headpost study, conducted by four vascular neurologists and researchers at Clínica Alemana – Doctors Verónica Olavarría, Paula Muñoz, Alejandro Brunser and Pablo Lavados - were published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) in June, in the United States.
The aim of the study was to determine whether a sitting up or lying down (flat) position of the patient in the first 24 hours after an acute cerebral infarction (or ischemic stroke) had any effect on the probability of death or disability at three months.
The overall results showed that the position of the head in patients with acute ischemic stroke does not affect the probability of death or disability at three months and that the flat position does not increase the risk of aspiration pneumonia.
This group of clinical researchers not only devised the concept of this study, but also published a total of 10 research articles in scientific journals on the same subject and, in particular, the pilot study conducted almost entirely at Clínica Alemana, providing the scientific support to the main work. Also, they were responsible for conducting the research not only at Clínica Alemana, but also across Chile and other countries in the region (Brazil and Colombia).
What was Headpost about?
The study was an international randomized clinical trial in 114 hospitals around the world, including countries like the United Kingdom, Australia, China, Taiwan, India, Sri Lanka, Chile, Brazil and Colombia.
This randomized study is the largest study ever conducted. More than 11,000 patients were randomly assigned to lie flat or with their heads elevated to at least 30 degrees during the first 24 hours after admission to the hospital or clinic for an ischemic stroke and were assessed 90 days later as to their degree of self-sufficiency or functional capacity.