Prehospital thrombolysis with reteplase: the Nijmegen/Rotterdam study
Objective: The objective of this observational study was to assess time from electrocardiogram diagnosis to treatment and time from pain onset to treatment with double bolus reteplase compared to current therapy with streptokinase or bolus anistreplase in 2 cities (Rotterdam and Nijmegen) in the Netherlands, where prehospital thrombolysis is an established way of treatment of acute myocardial infarction. Methods: Prehospital thrombolysis is performed using electrocardiogram diagnosis by the ambulance service as well as bolus anistreplase for treatment in Nijmegen, and streptokinase infusion in Rotterdam. Reteplase or anistreplase/streptokinase was assigned open label to patients according to order of presentation on a 1-to-1 basis. All patients were treated with nitrates sublingually and aspirin orally. Time intervals were recorded by the ambulance staff. Results: In total, 250 patients were treated between April 1, 1999 and August 1, 2000. Reteplase was used in 120 patients and anistreplase/streptokinase in 130 patients. Using double bolus reteplase resulted in a significantly shorter time to treatment: a median of 81 minutes compared to a median of 104 minutes with the established therapy (P < .0001). There were no differences in mortality, aborted myocardial infarction, hemorrhagic stroke or the need for rescue angioplasty between the groups. Conclusion: In prehospital thrombolysis, double bolus reteplase is associated with a shorter time to treatment than bolus anistreplase or infusion of streptokinase.