Acute ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction*: American College of Chest Physicians Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines (8th Edition)

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Abstract

This chapter about fibrinolytic, antiplatelet, and antithrombin treatment for acute ST-segment elevation (STE) myocardial infarction (MI) is part of the American College of Chest Physicians Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines (8th Edition). Grade 1 recommendations are strong and indicate that the benefits do, or do not, outweigh risks, burden, and costs. Grade 2 suggests that individual patient values may lead to different choices (for a full understanding of the grading see the chapter by Guyatt et al, CHEST 2008; 133[suppl]:123S–131S). Among the key recommendations in this chapter are the following: for patients with ischemic symptoms characteristic of acute MI of ≤ 12 h in duration and persistent STE, we recommend that all undergo rapid evaluation for reperfusion (primary percutaneous coronary intervention [PCI] or fibrinolytic) therapy and have a reperfusion strategy implemented promptly after contact with the health-care system (Grade 1A). For patients with ischemic symptoms characteristic of acute MI of ≤ 12 h in duration and persistent STE, we recommend administration of streptokinase, anistreplase, alteplase, reteplase, or tenecteplase over no fibrinolytic therapy (all Grade 1A). For patients with symptom duration ≤ 6 h, we recommend the administration of alteplase or tenecteplase over streptokinase (both Grade 1A). We recommend aspirin over no aspirin therapy followed by indefinite therapy (Grade 1A); we also recommend clopidogrel in addition to aspirin for up to 28 days (Grade 1A). In addition to aspirin and other antiplatelet therapies, we recommend the use of antithrombin therapy (eg, unfractionated heparin (UFH), enoxaparin, or fondaparinux) over no antithrombin therapy (Grade 1A), including for those patients receiving fibrinolysis (and regardless of which lytic agent is administered), primary PCI, or patients not receiving reperfusion therapy.

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