Lysis of left ventricular thrombi with urokinase.
In 16 patients with recent myocardial infarction (3 to 12 week old) and with large left ventricular thrombi systemic thrombolysis with urokinase was performed. Left ventricular thrombi were diagnosed by two-dimensional echocardiography; in all patients the mural thrombus was located in the area of recent myocardial infarction. Each of three patients suffered an embolic episode before the initiation of thrombolytic therapy and the episode caused a stroke in one. Urokinase was infused intravenously at a rate of 60,000 U/hr for 2 to 8 days in combination with intravenous heparin (200 units/kg X 12 hr). Left ventricular thrombi were successfully lysed in 10 of 16 patients, as determined by two-dimensional echocardiography. In four of the six remaining patients only partial thrombolysis was achieved and in two thrombolytic treatment failed. There was no evidence of embolic events during thrombolysis in any of the 16 patients. The success of thrombolysis seemed to depend on the age of the thrombus: the thrombus was dissolved in eight of nine patients undergoing thrombolysis within 4 weeks of the acute myocardial infarction vs in two of seven patients receiving treatment later (p = .057). The presence of a left ventricular aneurysm or depressed left ventricular function also appeared to reduce the likelihood of successful thrombolysis. All patients were discharged on oral anticoagulants. At 6 months follow-up (n = 9) no recurrence of left ventricular thrombus was found. These results show that left ventricular thrombi can be safely lysed by intravenous urokinase. However, for better definition of the risk and benefit of this new therapy further investigation is necessary.
- Copyright © 1985 by American Heart Association