The open-artery hypothesis states that myocardial reperfusion, even if late for myocardial salvage, provides benefits and prevents adverse cardiac remodeling. While observational data in humans regarding the deleterious impact of a permanent infarct-related artery occlusion and the benefits of spontaneous reperfusion are quite consistent, the reports regarding late revascularization are inconclusive in order to prove such a hypothesis. The observational studies tend to have selection biases, while randomized trials to date are too small to be conclusive. Moreover, the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying presumed benefits of reperfusion are still unclear. However, although the open-artery hypothesis remains unproven, the current evidence suggesting benefits calls for additional studies. Limitations of ischemic left ventricular dilatation and myopathy could markedly reduce cardiovascular morbidity and mortality after acute myocardial infarction.