Background: At the Istituto di Clinica Medica Generale e Cardiologia (Florence, Italy), the widespread use of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has markedly changed the hospital course of patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). These patients are typically transferred to the coronary care unit (CCU) only after primary PCI, whereas during the thrombolytic era, patients were first admitted to CCU before reperfusion. Objectives and methods: The incidence, timing and setting of complications from symptom onset to hospital discharge in 689 consecutive AMI patients undergoing PCI were evaluated. Results: Ventricular fibrillation occurred in 11% of patients, and most episodes (94.7%) occurred before or during PCI. Of all patients, 6.3% developed complete atrioventricular block (CAVB), and in 86.3% of these cases, the CAVB occurred before or during PCI; in 94.5%, a CAVB resolution occurred in the catheterization laboratory (CL). Thirty-one patients (4.5%) had impending shock on admission to the CL. Cardiogenic shock developed in 29 patients (4.2%), mostly in the prehospital phase or in the CL. Only four patients (less than 1%) developed cardiogenic shock later during their hospital course. Similarly, circulatory and ventilatory support, as well as temporary pacing and cardiac defibrillation, were used mostly in the prehospital phase or in the CL. During the CCU stay, 45 patients (6.5%) had hemorrhagic or vascular complications, and the incidence of post-PCI ischemia and early reocclusion of the culprit vessel were low (2.1% and 0.6%, respectively). Thus, cardiac complications usually associated with AMI were observed mainly before hospital admission or in the CL during the reopening of the target vessel. These complications were rarely observed after a successful PCI. Conclusions: For AMI patients, the CL is not only the site of PCI, it is also where most life-threatening cardiac complications are observed and treated.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Canadian Journal of Cardiology|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2006|
- Myocardial infarction
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine