Limitation of myocardial infarct expansion by reperfusion independent of myocardial salvage.
Very early reperfusion after coronary occlusion can reduce infarct size and preserve left ventricular function. Whether later reperfusion is of benefit is unclear. We studied the effect of very early reperfusion with myocardial salvage and "late" reperfusion without myocardial salvage on infarct expansion and aneurysm formation. Sixty-eight rats underwent left coronary artery ligation and were randomized to 30 min reperfusion, 2 hr reperfusion, or permanent coronary artery ligation. The animals were killed and the hearts examined at 2 weeks. Thirty minute reperfusion reduced infarct size, extent of transmurality, and infarct expansion. Two hour reperfusion reduced neither infarct size nor transmurality but inhibited infarct expansion. The results of this study in the rat preparation suggest a beneficial effect of "late" reperfusion on infarct expansion independent of myocardial salvage. If these results are confirmed in human beings, the period after myocardial infarction during which a patient can be considered for thrombolytic therapy or reperfusion by percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty could be greatly prolonged.
- Copyright © 1987 by American Heart Association