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      Reperfusion therapy for ST elevation acute myocardial infarction in Europe: description of the current situation in 30 countries

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      European Heart Journal

      Oxford University Press

      Acute myocardial infarction, Reperfusion therapy, Thrombolysis, Primary angioplasty, Europe, Mortality, Incidence

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          Abstract

          Aims

          Patient access to reperfusion therapy and the use of primary percutaneous coronary intervention (p-PCI) or thrombolysis (TL) varies considerably between European countries. The aim of this study was to obtain a realistic contemporary picture of how patients with ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) are treated in different European countries.

          Methods and results

          The chairpersons of the national working groups/societies of interventional cardiology in European countries and selected experts known to be involved in the national registries joined the writing group upon invitation. Data were collected about the country and any existing national STEMI or PCI registries, about STEMI epidemiology, and treatment in each given country and about PCI and p-PCI centres and procedures in each country. Results from the national and/or regional registries in 30 countries were included in this analysis. The annual incidence of hospital admission for any acute myocardial infarction (AMI) varied between 90–312/100 thousand/year, the incidence of STEMI alone ranging from 44 to 142. Primary PCI was the dominant reperfusion strategy in 16 countries and TL in 8 countries. The use of a p-PCI strategy varied between 5 and 92% (of all STEMI patients) and the use of TL between 0 and 55%. Any reperfusion treatment (p-PCI or TL) was used in 37–93% of STEMI patients. Significantly less reperfusion therapy was used in those countries where TL was the dominant strategy. The number of p-PCI procedures per million per year varied among countries between 20 and 970. The mean population served by a single p-PCI centre varied between 0.3 and 7.4 million inhabitants. In those countries offering p-PCI services to the majority of their STEMI patients, this population varied between 0.3 and 1.1 million per centre. In-hospital mortality of all consecutive STEMI patients varied between 4.2 and 13.5%, for patients treated by TL between 3.5 and 14% and for patients treated by p-PCI between 2.7 and 8%. The time reported from symptom onset to the first medical contact (FMC) varied between 60 and 210 min, FMC-needle time for TL between 30 and 110 min, and FMC-balloon time for p-PCI between 60 and 177 min.

          Conclusion

          Most North, West, and Central European countries used p-PCI for the majority of their STEMI patients. The lack of organized p-PCI networks was associated with fewer patients overall receiving some form of reperfusion therapy.

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          Most cited references 44

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          Primary angioplasty versus intravenous thrombolytic therapy for acute myocardial infarction: a quantitative review of 23 randomised trials.

          Many trials have been done to compare primary percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) with thrombolytic therapy for acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (AMI). Our aim was to look at the combined results of these trials and to ascertain which reperfusion therapy is most effective. We did a search of published work and identified 23 trials, which together randomly assigned 7739 thrombolytic-eligible patients with ST-segment elevation AMI to primary PTCA (n=3872) or thrombolytic therapy (n=3867). Streptokinase was used in eight trials (n=1837), and fibrin-specific agents in 15 (n=5902). Most patients who received thrombolytic therapy (76%, n=2939) received a fibrin-specific agent. Stents were used in 12 trials, and platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors were used in eight. We identified short-term and long-term clinical outcomes of death, non-fatal reinfarction, and stroke, and did subgroup analyses to assess the effect of type of thrombolytic agent used and the strategy of emergent hospital transfer for primary PTCA. All analyses were done with and without inclusion of the SHOCK trial data. Primary PTCA was better than thrombolytic therapy at reducing overall short-term death (7% [n=270] vs 9% [360]; p=0.0002), death excluding the SHOCK trial data (5% [199] vs 7% [276]; p=0.0003), non-fatal reinfarction (3% [80] vs 7% [222]; p<0.0001), stroke (1% [30] vs 2% [64]; p=0.0004), and the combined endpoint of death, non-fatal reinfarction, and stroke (8% [253] vs 14% [442]; p<0.0001). The results seen with primary PTCA remained better than those seen with thrombolytic therapy during long-term follow-up, and were independent of both the type of thrombolytic agent used, and whether or not the patient was transferred for primary PTCA. Primary PTCA is more effective than thrombolytic therapy for the treatment of ST-segment elevation AMI.
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            Guidelines for percutaneous coronary interventions. The Task Force for Percutaneous Coronary Interventions of the European Society of Cardiology.

            In patients with stable CAD, PCI can be considered a valuable initial mode of revascularization in all patients with objective large ischaemia in the presence of almost every lesion subset, with only one exception: chronic total occlusions that cannot be crossed. In early studies, there was a small survival advantage with CABG surgery compared with PCI without stenting. The addition of stents and newer adjunctive medications improved the outcome for PCI. The decision to recommend PCI or CABG surgery will be guided by technical improvements in cardiology or surgery, local expertise, and patients' preference. However, until proved otherwise, PCI should be used only with reservation in diabetics with multi-vessel disease and in patients with unprotected left main stenosis. The use of drug-eluting stents might change this situation. Patients presenting with NSTE-ACS (UA or NSTEMI) have to be stratified first for their risk of acute thrombotic complications. A clear benefit from early angiography (<48 h) and, when needed, PCI or CABG surgery has been reported only in the high-risk groups. Deferral of intervention does not improve outcome. Routine stenting is recommended on the basis of the predictability of the result and its immediate safety. In patients with STEMI, primary PCI should be the treatment of choice in patients presenting in a hospital with PCI facility and an experienced team. Patients with contra-indications to thrombolysis should be immediately transferred for primary PCI, because this might be their only chance for quickly opening the coronary artery. In cardiogenic shock, emergency PCI for complete revascularization may be life-saving and should be considered at an early stage. Compared with thrombolysis, randomized trials that transferred the patients for primary PCI to a 'heart attack centre' observed a better clinical outcome, despite transport times leading to a significantly longer delay between randomization and start of the treatment. The superiority of primary PCI over thrombolysis seems to be especially clinically relevant for the time interval between 3 and 12 h after onset of chest pain or other symptoms on the basis of its superior preservation of myocardium. Furthermore, with increasing time to presentation, major-adverse-cardiac-event rates increase after thrombolysis, but appear to remain relatively stable after primary PCI. Within the first 3 h after onset of chest pain or other symptoms, both reperfusion strategies seem equally effective in reducing infarct size and mortality. Therefore, thrombolysis is still a viable alternative to primary PCI, if it can be delivered within 3 h after onset of chest pain or other symptoms. Primary PCI compared with thrombolysis significantly reduced stroke. Overall, we prefer primary PCI over thrombolysis in the first 3 h of chest pain to prevent stroke, and in patients presenting 3-12 h after the onset of chest pain, to salvage myocardium and also to prevent stroke. At the moment, there is no evidence to recommend facilitated PCI. Rescue PCI is recommended, if thrombolysis failed within 45-60 min after starting the administration. After successful thrombolysis, the use of routine coronary angiography within 24 h and PCI, if applicable, is recommended even in asymptomatic patients without demonstrable ischaemia to improve patients' outcome. If a PCI centre is not available within 24 h, patients who have received successful thrombolysis with evidence of spontaneous or inducible ischaemia before discharge should be referred to coronary angiography and revascularized accordingly--independent of 'maximal' medical therapy.
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              The second Euro Heart Survey on acute coronary syndromes: Characteristics, treatment, and outcome of patients with ACS in Europe and the Mediterranean Basin in 2004.

              Our study aimed to examine the management of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) in Europe and the Mediterranean basin, and to compare adherence to guidelines with that reported in the first Euro Heart Survey on ACS (EHS-ACS-I), 4 years earlier. In a prospective survey conducted in 2004 (EHS-ACS-II), data describing the characteristics, treatment, and outcome of 6385 patients diagnosed with ACS in 190 medical centres in 32 countries were collected. ACS with ST-elevation was the initial diagnosis in 47% of patients, no ST-elevation in 48%, and undetermined electrocardiographic pattern in 5% of patients. Comparison of data collected in 2000 and 2004 showed similar baseline characteristics, but greater use of recommended medications and coronary interventions in EHS-ACS-II. Among patients with ST-elevation, the use of primary reperfusion increased slightly (from 56 to 64%), with a significant shift from fibrinolytic therapy to primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI). The use of PPCI rose from 37 to 59% among those undergoing primary reperfusion therapy. Analysis of data in 34 centres that participated in both surveys showed even greater improvement with respect to the use of recommended medical therapy, interventions, and outcome. Data from EHS-ACS-II suggest an increase in adherence to guidelines for treatment of ACS in comparison with EHS-ACS-I.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                On behalf of : on behalf of the European Association for Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions
                Journal
                Eur Heart J
                eurheartj
                ehj
                European Heart Journal
                Oxford University Press
                0195-668X
                1522-9645
                April 2010
                19 November 2009
                19 November 2009
                : 31
                : 8
                : 943-957
                Affiliations
                Cardiocenter, 3rd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University Prague , Czech Republic
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author. Tel: +420 267163159, Fax: +420 267162621, Email: widim@ 123456fnkv.cz or widimsky@ 123456upcmail.cz
                [†]

                see Appendix for the full list of contributors.

                Article
                ehp492
                10.1093/eurheartj/ehp492
                2854523
                19933242
                432b5cb0-5f0d-49d9-9d60-275d4ca312ce
                Published on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology. All rights reserved. © The Author 2009. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org

                The online version of this article has been published under an open access model. Users are entitled to use, reproduce, disseminate, or display the open access version of this article for non-commercial purposes provided that the original authorship is properly and fully attributed; the Journal, Learned Society and Oxford University Press are attributed as the original place of publication with correct citation details given; if an article is subsequently reproduced or disseminated not in its entirety but only in part or as a derivative work this must be clearly indicated. For commercial re-use, please contact journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org.

                Categories
                Clinical Research
                Coronary heart disease

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