Background Masseter area (MA), a surrogate for sarcopenia, appears to be useful when estimating postoperative survival, but there is lack of consensus regarding the potential predictive value of sarcopenia in acute ischemic stroke (AIS) patients. We hypothesized that MA and density (MD) evaluated from pre-interventional CT angiography scans predict postinterventional survival in patients undergoing mechanical thrombectomy (MT). Materials and methods 312 patients treated with MT for acute occlusions of the internal carotid artery (ICA) or the M1 segment of the middle cerebral artery (M1-MCA) between 2013 and 2018. Median follow-up was 27.4 months (range 0-70.4). Binary logistic (alive at 3 months, OR <1) and Cox regression analyses were used to study the effect of MA and MD averages (MAavg and MDavg) on survival. Results In Kaplan-Meier analysis, there was a significant inverse relationship with both MDavg and MAavg and mortality (MDavg P<0.001, MAavg P=0.002). Long-term mortality was 19.6% (n=61) and 3-month mortality 12.2% (n=38). In multivariable logistic regression analysis at 3 months, per 1-SD increase MDavg (OR 0.61, 95% CI 0.41 to 0.92, P=0.018:) and MAavg (OR 0.57, 95% CI 0.35 to 0.91, P=0.019) were the independent predictors associated with lower mortality. In Cox regression analysis, MDavg and MAavg were not associated with long-term survival. Conclusions In acute ischemic stroke patients, MDavg and MAavg are independent predictors of 3-month survival after MT of the ICA or M1-MCA. A 1-SD increase in MDavg and MAavg was associated with a 39%-43% decrease in the probability of death during the first 3 months after MT.
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