An Approach to Shorten Time to Infarct Artery Patency in Patients With ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction

Brian W. Gross, Kent W. Dauterman, Mark G. Moran, Todd S. Kotler, Stephen J. Schnugg, Paul S. Rostykus, Amy M. Ross, W. Douglas Weaver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


We developed a regional strategy to decrease the time to percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for patients with acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). Protocols were created for paramedics and referring hospitals to identify and directly triage all patients with STEMI to a single PCI center. Time to PCI reperfusion and in-hospital mortality were assessed in 233 consecutive patients with STEMI. Ninety-minute initial hospital door-to-patent infarct artery was achieved in 58.3% of paramedic-diagnosed and directly triaged patients compared with 37.5% of "walk-ins" to the PCI hospital and with only 5.2% of those transferred from another hospital emergency department (ED; p <0.001). Overall in-hospital mortality was 2.1%, 0% in paramedic identified patients, and 0% in those walk-ins to the PCI hospital ED compared with 4.3% for those transferred from a referring hospital ED (p = 0.007). Paramedic diagnosis of STEMI and direct triage to a prealerted interventional hospital for primary PCI was associated with a high percentage of patients achieving <90-minute infarct artery patency. Substantial delays remained for those who presented initially to a non-PCI hospital ED despite the expedited protocol. In conclusion, this observational study suggests that wider use of paramedic electrocardiographic STEMI diagnosis and direct triage to a prealerted PCI hospital catheterization team may help improve outcomes of patients with STEMI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1360-1363
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 15 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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