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Am J Cardiol. 1990 Feb 2;65(6):12C-19C.

New approaches to treatment of myocardial infarction.

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  • 1Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905.


Survival of patients with acute transmural infarction is largely related to the size of the myocardial infarction. The goal of thrombolytic therapy in acute myocardial infarction is maximal salvage of myocardium by reestablishment of flow in the occluded infarct-related artery and the establishment and maintenance of a patent infarct-related artery. Results of randomized trials show a significant reduction in mortality in patients who have undergone thrombolysis. A patent infarct-related artery, even in the absence of a change in left ventricular function, is associated with reduced mortality. The Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction Trial and the European Cooperative Trial showed that recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator is superior to streptokinase in reestablishing flow in a totally occluded artery. Experimental and clinical evidence suggests that thrombolysis and thrombosis occur simultaneously, and that lysis appears to increase both thrombin and platelet activity. Effective reduction of thrombosis accelerates thrombolysis. Rethrombosis after thrombolysis is due to anchored residual thrombus, which alters the hemorrheology of blood flow and produces a highly thrombogenic substrate that is largely due to residual fibrin-bound thrombin. Platelet deposition is directly related to severity of residual stenosis and shear rate. Thrombin appears to be the most potent of the 5 potential stimulators of platelet activation during arterial thrombosis. Proper anticoagulation can play an important role in reducing thrombosis. Experimental evidence strongly supports the use of heparin during and after thrombolysis. A recently reported study shows continued reduction of residual stenosis after 1 month of vigorous anticoagulation with intravenous heparin and subsequent oral anticoagulation.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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