Monitoring of fibrin generation during thrombolytic therapy of acute myocardial infarction with recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator.
Fibrinopeptide A (FPA) is a very sensitive marker of fibrin generation in vivo. Because an imbalance between thrombogenic and thrombolytic forces may be responsible for the failure to recanalize and for reocclusion of coronary arteries, such a marker could be of eminent value during thrombolytic treatment of acute myocardial infarction. Thirty-four consecutive patients with acute myocardial infarction (peak creatine kinase level, 1,869 +/- 1,543 IU/l) were treated with 100 mg recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator (rt-PA) 3.1 +/- 1.1 hours after onset of chest pain. Angiography 12.5 +/- 6.1 days later revealed an 81% patency rate of the infarct-related vessel. FPA plasma levels (normal, 1.9 +/- 0.5 ng/ml) were 34 +/- 46 ng/ml on admission and 93 +/- 86 ng/ml (538 +/- 674% with respect to each patient's admission level) after 90 minutes of rt-PA infusion (p less than 0.01). In patients without evidence of reocclusion (including three primary failures), FPA levels fell under continuous heparin infusion to 6.7 +/- 9.7 ng/ml (24 +/- 33%, p less than 0.01) within 30 minutes and were 3.1 +/- 2.2 ng/ml (15 +/- 15%, p less than 0.01), 1.6 +/- 1.1 ng/ml (8 +/- 10%, p less than 0.01), and 2.5 +/- 3.0 ng/ml (12 +/- 16%, p less than 0.01) 30 minutes, 9 hours, and 21 hours, respectively, after completion of rt-PA therapy. Five patients sustained intermittent or permanent coronary reocclusion after primary thrombolytic success. Their early postlytic FPA levels (13-51 ng/ml) remained high or increased again despite adequate anticoagulation. FPA allows the monitoring of fibrin generation during acute myocardial infarction and thrombolytic therapy. Despite successful recanalization, fibrin generation is increased under rt-PA administration before anticoagulation. Patients under anticoagulation with postlytic FPA levels less than 5 ng/ml or below their admission value seem to be at low risk of reocclusion for several days. FPA levels that are persistently high or that increase again despite adequate anticoagulation indicate ongoing fibrin generation. However, whether FPA can indeed be considered a useful marker of reocclusion remains to be confirmed in a larger population of patients with acute myocardial infarction.
- Copyright © 1989 by American Heart Association