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Door-to-Balloon Delays Increase Risk of Death

Large-scale study of heart attack patients recommends short as possible time to treatment

WEDNESDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- In patients admitted with ST elevation myocardial infarction, any delay in primary percutaneous coronary intervention is associated with an increased risk of death, according to a study published online May 19 in BMJ.

Saif S. Rathore, of the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., and colleagues conducted a prospective cohort study of 43,801 patients enrolled in the 2005 to 2006 American College of Cardiology National Cardiovascular Data Registry. Of these participants, 4.6 percent died in the hospital.

The researchers found that longer door-to-balloon times were associated with a steadily increasing adjusted risk of mortality. Times of 30, 60, and 90 minutes were associated with risks of 3, 3.5, and 4.3 percent, respectively; while times of 120, 150, and 180 minutes were associated with risks of 5.6, 7, and 8.4 percent, respectively. They also found that reductions of door-to-balloon times from 90 minutes to 60 minutes, and from 60 minutes to 30 minutes, would decrease mortality by 0.8 and 0.5 percent, respectively.

"Time to treatment should be as short as possible, even in centers currently providing primary percutaneous coronary intervention within 90 minutes," the authors conclude.

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