Results of Study on Treating Heart Attacks to Lower Risk of Complications
A study, which was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that transferring heart attack patients to specialized hospitals to undergo angioplasty within six hours after receiving thrombolytic drugs (clot-busting drugs) reduces the risk of life-threatening complications including repeat heart attacks.
The researchers followed 1,059 heart attack patients who were treated with clot-busting drugs at community hospital emergency departments. Patients were then randomly assigned to one of two groups: those who were urgently transfer for angioplasty within six hours, or those who received the standard care. The researchers then compared the strategy of transferring heart attack patients to hospitals with on-site angioplasty facilities to undergo angioplasty within six hours after administration of clot-busting drugs with the traditional approach of transferring only those patients when clot-busting drug treatments are unsuccessful.