We investigated the feasibility of using frequency-domain near-infrared spectroscopy (fdNIRS) to
study brain oxygenation in the first few hours of stroke onset. The OxiplexTS® fdNIRS system was used in
this study. Using a standard probing protocol based on surface landmarks, we measured brain tHb and
StO2 in healthy volunteers, cadavers, and acute stroke patients within 9 h of stroke onset and 3 days later.
We obtained measurements from 11 controls, 5 cadavers, and 5 acute stroke patients. StO2 values were significantly
lower in cadavers compared to the controls and stroke patients. Each stroke patient had at least one
area with reduced StO2 on the stroke side compared to the contralateral side. The evolution of tHb and StO2 at
3 days differed depending on whether a large infarct occurred. This study shows the proof of principle that
quantified measurements of brain oxygenation using NIRS could be used in the hectic environment of acute
stroke management. It also highlights the current technical limitations and future challenges in the development
of this unique bedside monitoring tool for stroke.
National Sciences and Engineering Research Council; Alberta Innovates Health Solutions