TeleStroke Program

With a stroke, time is brain. The faster the treatment, the better the outcomes. Lake Charles Memorial Hospital's Emergency Department uses video conferencing technology. The TeleStroke process is similar to communicating via a Web cam. The ER team can see the stroke team and the stroke team can see the patient and ER team. Both teams use one set of protocols to perform the evaluation and begin treatment.

  • 24-hour access to stroke experts and specialized services not otherwise available.
  • Advanced videoconferencing systems allow Tulane Medical Center stroke specialists to be “in the room” with the patient and doctor at Lake Charles Memorial’s Emergency Room.
  • Tulane’s stroke specialists help to evaluate the patient and consult on diagnosis, treatment or appropriate transfer.
  • The goal is to keep patients near their family and friends and only transfer patients when specialized care is needed.

How TeleStroke Works

Step 1: EMS personnel begin assessing the stroke patient during the trip to the hospital.

Step 2: After the patient arrives at the emergency department, ER personnel quickly perform diagnostic tests and an initial assessment.

Step 3: The ER physician or Tulane Medical Center neurologist (who has received a call from the emergency department) initiates a secure video conference using computer monitors located in both the emergency department and at Tulane Medical Center.

Step 4: A Tulane Medical Center neurologist or neurosurgeon conducts a virtual, real-time neurological exam in collaboration with the ER physician and Memorial's neuro specialists. Via video, the stroke expert can communicate with the patient and ER physician. As part of the consultation brain images (CT Scans) are also reviewed to ensure excellent care.

Step 5: Together the ER physician and Tulane Medical Center decide on the best treatment. If appropriate, the ER physician administers a clot busting drug. Patients often remain in their local hospitals. In some cases, patients are transferred to a specialized care center, such as Tulane Medical Center.