Prehospital Fibrinolysis Therapy in Acute Myocardial Infarction: A Narrative Review

Cureus. 2024 Jan 10;16(1):e52045. doi: 10.7759/cureus.52045. eCollection 2024 Jan.


Acute myocardial infarction is a fatal condition. Acute myocardial infarction requires appropriate timely reperfusion therapy to improve the outcomes. Fibrinolysis and percutaneous coronary intervention are the cornerstone strategies for managing such cases. In this review, our objective is to summarize the available evidence concerning the administration of prehospital fibrinolysis and its impact on patient outcomes in patients with acute myocardial infarction. We conducted a comprehensive literature search across PubMed, Cochrane Library, Scopus, and Web of Science databases. Our search strategy included the following terms: "Prehospital," "EMS," "Emergency Medical Services," "ambulance," "Fibrinolytic Therapy," "alteplase," "streptokinase," "reteplase," "tenecteplase," "Acute Myocardial Infarction," and "patient outcomes." We found prehospital administration of fibrinolysis may improve the outcomes and decrease the mortality rate. We found that some recommendations were to use prehospital fibrinolysis only if the percutaneous coronary intervention was not accessible within two hours. Additionally, we discussed recommendations to use newer prehospital fibrinolysis as they have better efficacy and safety outcomes. In conclusion, prehospital fibrinolysis decreases the total ischemic time and improves outcomes in acute myocardial infarction patients when timely percutaneous coronary intervention is not available. The guidelines strongly recommend it when the anticipated time for percutaneous coronary intervention exceeds two hours. Ongoing research optimizes patient selection, treatment tools, and prehospital systems of care.

Keywords: alteplase (tpa); fibrinolytic therapy; inj reteplase; myocardial infarction; prehospital fibrinolysis; streptokinase; tenecteplase (tnk).

Publication types

  • Review