Limitation of infarct size and preservation of left ventricular function after primary coronary angioplasty compared with intravenous streptokinase in acute myocardial infarction.
BACKGROUND Early and effective flow through the infarct-related vessel is probably of paramount importance for limitation of infarct size and preservation of left ventricular function in patients with acute myocardial infarction. Primary coronary angioplasty may offer advantages in these respects compared with thrombolytic therapy. The purpose of the present study was to assess the effects on estimated enzymatic infarct size and left ventricular function in patients with acute myocardial infarction randomly assigned to undergo primary angioplasty or to receive intravenous streptokinase.
METHODS AND RESULTS We evaluated 301 patients with signs of acute myocardial infarction and without contraindications for thrombolysis who presented within 6 hours after onset of symptoms or between 6 and 24 hours if there was evidence of ongoing ischemia. One hundred fifty-two patients were randomly assigned to undergo primary angioplasty, and 149 patients were assigned to receive treatment with streptokinase (1.5 million U i.v.). Infarct size was estimated from enzyme release. Global left ventricular ejection fraction and regional wall motion, if possible in combination with exercise testing, were evaluated by radionuclide ventriculography before discharge. Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction (TIMI) flow grade 3 through the infarct-related vessel within 120 minutes after admission was achieved in 92% of all patients assigned to receive primary angioplasty therapy. Myocardial infarct size was 23% smaller in the angioplasty group compared with patients assigned to receive streptokinase (1003 +/- 784 versus 1310 +/- 1198 U/L, P = .012). Global left ventricular ejection fraction (50 +/- 9% versus 45 +/- 11%, P < .001) and regional wall motion in the infarct-related zones (42 +/- 14% versus 34 +/- 13%, P < .001) were better in the angioplasty group, which could mainly be contributed to myocardial salvage in the infarct-related areas. The observed differences were more pronounced in patients with an anterior wall myocardial infarction, although patients with a nonanterior infarct location also showed a beneficial effect of primary coronary angioplasty on left ventricular function compared with streptokinase therapy. Furthermore, the observed differences appeared to be more pronounced in patients presenting relatively early (within 2 hours) after onset of symptoms.
CONCLUSIONS In patients with acute myocardial infarction, primary angioplasty results in a smaller infarct size and a better preserved myocardial function compared with patients randomized to receive treatment with intravenous streptokinase. This is probably due to early and optimal blood flow through the infarct-related vessel, as can be accomplished in a very high percentage of patients undergoing primary coronary angioplasty.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association