Prehospital strategies to expedite myocardial salvage
Recent large-scale clinical investigations have shown the overwhelming importance of early intervention in acute myocardial infarction (AMI), thereby underlining the crucial role of emergency medical technician- paramedics (EMT-Ps) in helping to assess and treat heart attack victims. Some of these studies have included administration of thrombolytic drugs by paramedics. Emergency medical service teams equipped with 12-lead ECGs, diagnostics, checklists, and 2-way communications are becoming the standard in many communities in developed countries and help reduce in-hospital delays in diagnosis. Together with newer diagnostic hardware and software, novel thrombolytics that are rapid and easy to administer will help paramedics overcome current bottlenecks to the expeditious delivery of life-saving care to AMI victims. Public awareness programs as suggested by the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) guidelines are essential to enlist support for government funding of emergency medical services that can frequently mean the difference between life and death.
Moore, WE; Hennekens, C; Becker, RC; Zweifler, A
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