Reperfusion of old or new: left bundle branch block?
Friday, February 26, 2010
Reperfusion options for patients suffering ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) have developed significantly over recent years and now include both thrombolytic therapy and primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI). This system of care means that patients presenting with STEMI can be transferred directly to a heart-attack centre to receive immediate PPCI. National guidelines state that pre-hospital thrombolysis (PHT) is a crucial part of STEMI reperfusion where PPCI cannot be delivered within 90 minutes of diagnosis. There is evidence describing rates of in-hospital thrombolysis in both MI with ST elevation and MI with LBBB. There is a knowledge gap however describing treatment of MI with LBBB based upon a pre-hospital 12-lead ECG. This paper describes the challenges around PHT in the context of LBBB and offers potential solutions that may provide assistance in making the decision to undertake PHT or not.
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