Acute Coronary SyndromesYun D.D. · Alpert J.S.
aSection of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, University of Arizona, and bDepartment of Medicine, University of Arizona, College of Medicine, Tucson, Ariz., USA
Acute coronary syndromes are defined as unstable angina, non-Q-wave myocardial infarction, and Q-wave myocardial infarction. These entities remain among the commonest life-threatening illnesses in industrialized nations. Prompt recognition of a patient with an acute coronary syndrome is important since appropriate therapy can markedly improve the patient’s prognosis. Reperfusion strategies for patients with Q-wave myocardial infarction, and anticoagulation and antiplatelet therapy for patients with unstable angina or non-Q-wave myocardial infarction are examples of such potentially life-saving interventions. A number of adjunctive pharmacological interventions are also beneficial following reperfusion therapy in patients with Q-wave myocardial infarction. Management of complications following Q-wave myocardial infarction has improved markedly in recent years. This is particularly the case with postinfarction ischemia or heart failure. Persistent arrhythmias, and in particular ventricular arrhythmias, remain a troubling challenge for the clinician. Reperfusion therapy markedly reduces the incidence of complications following Q-wave myocardial infarction
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