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Study Finds Timing Is Everything For Some Heart Attack Patients
Date:11/11/2008

Study highlights:

-- Overall, patients with a common form of heart attack called non-STEMI (meaning without ST elevation on the EKG), there is not a significant difference in the combined endpoint of death, heart attack or stroke at 6 months whether their diagnostic angiogram is performed within 24 hours of the non-STEMI or days later, including after discharge from the hospital.

-- However, for the subset of non-STEMI patients with the worst prognosis (GRACE score > 140), early angiography and revascularization results in a significant reduction in the risk of death, second heart attack or stroke.

-- The secondary endpoint of death, heart attack or continued ischemia, was significantly improved with early angiography.

NEW ORLEANS, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- There is strong evidence that getting to the hospital quickly during a heart attack is critical, since early treatment saves both lives and heart muscle. And if the responsible coronary artery is completely blocked, it should be opened as soon as possible. What about patients with incomplete blockages, who have ACS or acute coronary syndrome? They should get to the hospital just as fast, but once there and on medical treatment, do they need to race to the cath lab? Not always, researchers said, regarding the TIMing of Intervention in Acute Coronary Syndrome (TIMACS) study they presented as a late-breaking clinical trial at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008.

The study of 3,031 patients treated at 100 medical centers in 17 countries was a prospective comparison of the relative usefulness, safety and cost effectiveness of early (within 24 hours) angiography, followed by revascularization if necessary, versus a delay of more than 36 hours after the onset of unstable angina (chest pain) or non-ST segment elevation heart attack.

An early diagnostic angiogram reduced the relative risk of the composite endpoint of death, second heart attack
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SOURCE American Heart Association
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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