Dr. Michael Hill

Dr. Michael Hill was awarded the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Alberta, NWT & Nunavut (HSFA) Professorship in Stroke Research in 2005. A deserving recipient, Dr. Hill is an internationally respected researcher who plays an integral role in furthering the goals of the Calgary Stroke Program, Alberta Provincial Stroke Strategy, and improving the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of stroke worldwide.

Through the assistance of HSFA funding, Dr. Hill is testing safety, appropriate dosage, and the efficacy of several new clot busting drugs such as, TNK-tPA and V10153 against the current standard, tPA. tPA has been used to treat patients with ischemic stroke since the 1990s, and is the only Health Canada approved clot busting drug at present. tPA has its limitations; it works in only 30 to 40 per cent of stroke cases, and must be given within 3 hours of the onset of stroke – even then, some clots are just too big for the drug to take full effect. With the emergence of new clot-busting drugs, stroke patients will have access to better treatments.

"But key to surviving a stroke is getting to the hospital early. Even new drugs can't save brain that is already severely damaged," says Dr. Hill. "It's important that people learn to recognize the symptoms of a stroke and react immediately. The faster we treat someone having a stroke, the better the outcome."

Other aspects of Dr. Hill’s research encompass ways to reduce brain damage and /or cognitive impairment following a stroke, as well as improving administration and effectiveness of various stroke therapies.