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Percutaneous cardiac support during myocardial infarction drastically reduces mortality: perspectives from a swine model

Maria Giovanna Trivella, Alessandra Piersgilli, Fabio Bernini, Gualtiero Pelosi, Silvia Burchielli, Stefano Puzzuoli, Claudia Kusmic, Antonio L’Abbate
Background/aims Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) with cardiogenic shock (CS) remains the leading cause of in-hospital death in acute coronary syndromes. In the AMI-CS pig model we tested the efficacy of temporary percutaneous cardiorespiratory assist device (PCRA) in rescuing the failing heart and reducing early mortality. Methods In open-chest pigs we induced AMI by proximal left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) ligation. Eight animals without PCRA (C group) were compared with 12 animals otherwise treated with PCRA (T group), starting approximately at 60 minutes post-occlusion and lasting 120-180 minutes. In 3 animals of the T group, regional myocardial oxygen content was also imaged by two-dimensional near infrared spectroscopy (2D-NIRS) with and without PCRA, before and after LAD reperfusion. Results All animals without PCRA died despite unrelenting resuscitation maneuvers (120 minutes average survival time). Conversely, animals treated with PCRA showed a reduction in life-threatening arrhythmia and maintenance of aortic pressure, allowing interruption of PCRA in all cases early in the experiments, with sound hemodynamics at the end of the observation period. During LAD occlusion, NIRS showed severe de-oxygenation of the LAD territory that improved with PCRA. After PCRA suspension and LAD reperfusion, the residual de-oxygenated area proved to be smaller than the initial risk area. Conclusions In AMI, PCRA initiated during advanced CS drastically reduced early mortality from 100% to 0% in a 4-5 hour observation period. PCRA promoted oxygenation of the ischemic area during LAD occlusion. Results support the use of PCRA as first line of treatment in AMI-CS, improving myocardial rescue and short-term survival.

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