Published: 5 February 2020
Author(s): Stefano Coiro, Claudio Cavallini
Section: Editorial

Ischemic heart disease (IHD) remains the leading cause of death worldwide [1], regardless of the income level of the country [2]. Mortality trends for IHD slowly but progressively declined over the last decades [1]. This gradual decrease may be explained by a reduced impact of some conditions including smoking and hypertension, by the generally more effective treatment of cardiovascular risk factors, and finally, by the improvement in the management of acute coronary syndromes [1]. Since the release of 2004 Guidelines for the management of patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) [3], primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) have been chosen as the preferred reperfusion strategy over fibrinolysis, provided that it could be performed in a timely fashion: 120 min is the maximum allowed from the diagnosis of STEMI to primary PCI [4].

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