Study objectives: To assess the practical application and safety of prehospital antithrombotic therapy with the glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa inhibitor eptifibatide for patients with suspected acute coronary syndrome (ACS) or myocardial infarction (MI).
Design: Open-labeled pilot study. Patients with typical chest pain who were seen within 6 h of the onset of symptoms were enrolled in the mobile emergency ambulance. Patients were stratified by even/uneven days to receive standard treatment or standard treatment plus an IV bolus of eptifibatide (180 μg/kg body weight) followed by a continuous eptifibatide infusion (2 μg/kg/min). The main outcome measurement was a combination of prehospital or in-hospital death, reinfarction, revascularization of target vessels, and major bleeding complications.
Results: A total of 356 patients (age range, 29 to 75 years; women, 24.7%) were included in the analysis. On admission to the hospital, the diagnosis of ACS or MI was confirmed in approximately 60% of patients, and alternative diagnoses were made in 40% of patients. The rates of complications, including fatal and nonfatal complications occurring during transportation and during subsequent hospitalization, were similar in both study groups. The primary end point occurred in 11.8% of patients in the control group, and in 9.6% of those in the eptifibatide group (difference not significant).
Conclusion: The prehospital administration of the GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor eptifibatide is feasible and safe in patients with clinically suspected ACS and MI. The benefit of this treatment has yet to be established in a large-scale multicenter study.