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Am J Cardiol. 1998 Oct 1;82(7):839-44.

Intracoronary aspiration thrombectomy for acute myocardial infarction.

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Department of Cardiology, Fukui Cardiovascular Center, Shimbo, Japan.


To investigate the pathogenesis of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and values of intracoronary aspiration thrombectomy (ICAT), we applied ICAT to reperfusion therapy using generally available intracoronary catheters to aspirate intracoronary occlusive tissues. We assigned ICAT or primary percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) to patients with evolving AMI (Thrombolysis In Myocardial Infarction (TIMI) trial grade 0), and investigated primary histopathologic, clinical, and angiographic outcomes in 43 patients treated with ICAT alone or followed by PTCA, and compared the outcomes with those in 48 patients treated with primary PTCA. No major complications (procedural death, emergent bypass graft surgery) occurred. Reconalization (TIMI grade 3 and 2) was achieved in 25 patients (58%) with ICAT alone and in 39 patients (91%) with ICAT alone or followed by PTCA. Aspirated thrombi were defined as recent thrombi in 21 cases (49%), atheroma in 6 (14%), no thrombi in 13 (30%), and organized thrombi in 1 case. In cases of recent thrombi, ICAT alone provided recanalization more frequently than in those of atheroma or no thrombi (18 of 21 [86%], 3 of 6 [50%], 4 of 13 [31%], respectively; p < 0.05; recent thrombi vs atheroma or no thrombi). There were no significant differences in primary recanalization rate (ICAT alone or followed by PTCA vs primary PTCA; 91% vs 92%) or incidence of complications between the 2 strategies. These results indicate that although the pathogenesis of AMI is heterogeneous in each individual case, intracoronary thrombus contributes little to the pathogenesis of average AMI, and therefore mechanical approaches may be feasible to maximize reperfusion therapies for AMI.

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