Out-of-hospital treatment of acute myocardial infarction

Patients who experience an acute ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) present a common clinical problem. While the treatment for this condition has undergone various changes in recent years, the underlying pathophysiology has remained the same. The patient experiences an acute coronary atheromatous plaque which fissures or ruptures, leading to the development of thrombus associated with the acute plaque causing occlusion of the vessel. This causes the typical symptoms of acute STEMI of chest pain, breathlessness, sweating and nausea/vomiting, as well as the classical changes on the resting electrocardiogram (ECG). Once the coronary artery is blocked, the myocardium supplied by the vessel is at risk of necrosis, unless the vessel can be reopened and the blood supply is restored. Time is of the essence, since the quicker the vessel can be reopened, the less myocardial damage occurs. In this article, the use of thrombolysis to treat patients with STEMI is described. This covers its administration within the hospital setting and its use prehospital. The treatment of patients with STEMI using coronary angioplasty/stenting is addressed, including the assessment of the patient, the procedure itself and also the care of the patient following the procedure.

Subscribe to get full access to the Journal of Paramedic Practice

Thank you for vising the Journal of Paramedic Practice and reading our archive of expert clinical content. If you would like to read more from the only journal dedicated to those working in emergency care, you can start your subscription today for just £48.

CPD Focus

Reading the Journal of Paramedic Practice counts towards your professional development

Develop your career

We provide professional information dedicated to paramedics covering training, education and jobs

Stay informed

Get the latest clinical information to ensure you are aware of the latest think and best practice in paramedicne

Subscribe now

Already registered? - Sign in here

Keep up to date with Journal of Paramedic Practice!

Sign up to Journal of Paramedic Practice’s regular newsletters and keep up-to-date with the very latest clinical research and CPD we publish each month.