Myocardial contrast echocardiography in ST elevation myocardial infarction: ready for prime time?


Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) continues to be a significant public health problem in industrialized countries and an increasingly significant problem in developing countries. ST elevation myocardial infarctions (STEMI) constitute approximately 40% of all AMIs with approximately 670,000 cases yearly in the United States alone. The risk of further cardiac complications such as re-infarction, sudden death, and heart failure for those who survive AMI is substantial. Thus, early assessment and risk stratification during the acute phase of STEMI is important. Furthermore, it is essential to assess the efficacy early after any initial therapeutic intervention, not only to facilitate further management, but also to enable development of new treatment algorithms/approaches to further improve the outcome. The aim of reperfusion therapy in AMI is not only to rapidly restore epicardial coronary blood flow but also to restore perfusion at the microcirculatory level. Myocardial contrast echocardiography (MCE) which utilizes microbubbles can assess myocardial perfusion in real time. Its ability to assess myocardial perfusion and function in one examination allows it to ascertain the extent of myocardial reperfusion achieved in the risk area. Furthermore, in stable patients after AMI, MCE allows assessment of LV function, residual myocardial viability, and ischaemia which are all powerful prognostic markers of outcome. Its portability, rapid acquisition and interpretation of data, and the absence of radiation exposure make it an ideal bedside technique.

DOI: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehm621

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@article{Hayat2008MyocardialCE, title={Myocardial contrast echocardiography in ST elevation myocardial infarction: ready for prime time?}, author={S. A. Hayat and Roxy Senior}, journal={European heart journal}, year={2008}, volume={29 3}, pages={299-314} }