MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The WVU Stroke Center earned three performance awards for its exemplary work in the Stroke Hyperglycemia Insulin Network Effort (SHINE) Trial, a multicenter, randomized, controlled clinical trial of more than 1,100 patients across 70 participating sites.

Muhammad “Mud” Alvi, M.D.
Muhammad “Mud” Alvi, M.D.

The aim of the trial, which was conducted between April 2012 and December 2018, was to determine if aggressively trying to control the blood sugar of hyperglycemic stroke patients with insulin infusion therapy would result in improved outcomes. The belief was that a lower blood sugar – around 120 mg/dL – would be better for the patient. 

“Overall, the trial was neutral. What we were trying to prove – that aggressively trying to lower the patient’s blood sugar – was not shown in the trial’s results,” Muhammad “Mud” Alvi, M.D., director of the WVU Stroke Center, said. “While it was not groundbreaking or practice-changing, it does show that we don’t want to be too aggressive with blood sugar control.”

The primary results of the SHINE trial were presented at the International Stroke Conference 2019, which was held in February in Honolulu. At the conference, the WVU Stroke Center was recognized with three awards.

The awards are:

  • The Punctual Performance Award for going the extra mile to submit all collected data by the trial deadline
  • The Regulatory Award for doing an exceptional job of adhering to the trial protocol
  • The SHINE Zulu Flag Award, which was given to centers that enrolled a high number of patients

“These awards exemplify the hard work of the entire team. There were multiple physicians, nurses, and pharmacists involved in this effort. Jay Sherman, our research coordinator, worked very hard for this trial,” Dr. Alvi said. “This is one of the missions of WVU Stroke Center – to advance science and to have the most advanced treatments be available for our patients.”

This is not the first time the WVU Stroke Center has been nationally recognized. In 2017, the WVU Stroke Center earned the state’s first and only Gold Seal of Approval® from the Joint Commission and Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification for Comprehensive Stroke Centers from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. The Gold Seal of Approval® and the Heart-Check mark represent symbols of quality from their respective organizations.

The WVU Stroke Center has also been consistently recognized by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus quality-improvement program for its excellence in care and commitment to improvement. The award is given to hospitals that consistently meet Get With The Guidelines-Stroke achievement indicators and quality measures. The Center has been a Gold Plus recipient for seven years.

Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite Plus recognizes hospitals that reduce the time between the patient’s arrival at the hospital and treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA. A short “door-to-needle” time is imperative to preserve brain function after a stroke. In 2018, the WVU Stroke Center’s average door-to-needle time was 35 minutes – 27 minutes below the national average for participating hospitals. Nationally, participating hospitals treated 52 percent of patients in less than 45 minutes, while the Stroke Center beat 45 minutes for 80 percent of patients in 2018.

Stroke is the number five cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States, according to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

For more information on the WVU Stroke Center, visit www.wvumedicine.org/stroke