The clinical impact of contrast medium selection during primary percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty for acute myocardial infarction (AMI) has not been studied. We compared the clinical outcomes of patients who received ionic versus nonionic low osmolar contrast medium in the setting of primary percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty for AMI in the second Global Use of Strategies to Open Occluded Coronary Arteries in Acute Coronary Syndromes (GUSTO IIb) trial. Univariable and multivariable analyses were performed to assess the relation between contrast medium selection and clinical outcome (death, reinfarction, or refractory ischemia) at 30 days. Although baseline clinical and angiographic characteristics were generally similar between the 2 groups, patients who received ionic, low osmolar contrast were less likely to have been enrolled at a US site (23% vs 43%, p = 0.001) and less likely to have occlusion of the left anterior descending coronary artery (34% vs 47%, p = 0.03) or a history of prior AMI (8% vs 16%, p = 0.02). The triple composite end point of death, reinfarction, or refractory ischemia occurred less frequently in the ionic group, both in the hospital (4.4% vs 11%, p = 0.018) and at 30 days (5.5% vs 11%, p = 0.044). Although the trend favoring ionic contrast persisted, the differences were no longer statistically significant after adjustment for imbalances in baseline characteristics using a risk model developed from the study sample (n = 454, adjusted odds ratio for ionic contrast 0.48 [0.22 to 1.02], p = 0.055), and using a model developed from the entire GUSTO IIb study cohort (n = 12,142, adjusted odds ratio for ionic contrast 0.50 [0.23 to 1.06], p = 0.072). The results of this observational study warrant further elucidation by a randomized study design in this setting.