For the first time, Australian doctors will have clinical guidelines to help them diagnose and manage stroke in children.
The document, developed by the Australian Childhood Stroke Advisory Committee, aim to improve the diagnosis and acute management of the approximately 300 children who have a stroke each year.
Key recommendations include recognising the symptoms that require investigation and the importance of urgent MRI using child-specific imaging protocols for an accurate stroke diagnosis.
The guidelines will lead to better paediatric care, said Associate Professor Mark Mackay, director of the Royal Children’s Hospital’s Stroke Program and researcher with the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute.
Both Melbourne-based organisations were involved in developing the document.
“The guideline aims to facilitate better standards of care across Australian paediatric hospitals for childhood stroke, reduce the time to diagnose stroke and ensure all children are provided with the same high-quality evidence-based care,” Professor Mackay said.