Prehospital unfractionated heparin and primary percutaneous coronary intervention


Unfractionated heparin (UFH) is an anticoagulant used by some, but not all, ambulance services in the treatment of patients who will undergo primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI) due to ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). This study reviews the effectiveness and safety of prehospital unfractionated heparin administration to STEMI patients prior to PPCI, and considers whether it should be used more widely for these purposes across international ambulance services. A literature search was conducted to identify articles relevant to prehospital UFH administration prior to PPCI. The reviewed literature unequivocally demonstrates that early anticoagulant administration is safe, effective and highly appropriate for STEMI patients who subsequently undergo PPCI. This study find that anticoagulants such as UFH or, in some jurisdictions, enoxaparin—should be strongly considered as a standard feature of prehospital treatment regimens for STEMI patients who will subsequently undergo PPCI.

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.