What is percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), and what is its role in the treatment of ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) (MI, heart attack)?

Updated: May 07, 2019
  • Author: A Maziar Zafari, MD, PhD, FACC, FAHA; Chief Editor: Eric H Yang, MD  more...
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Answer

PCI is defined as an emergent percutaneous coronary intervention in the setting of STEMI, without previous fibrinolytic treatment. It is the preferred reperfusion strategy in patients with STEMI, provided it can be performed expeditiously within clinical practice guidelines–mandated times and in high-volume centers with experienced interventional cardiology teams and skilled support staff.

PCI achieves superior reperfusion outcomes and is associated with less complications, death, and long-term complications of STEMI when compared to fibrinolytic therapy. [2, 4, 77, 78, 79]


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