What is a Heart Attack?
An acute myocardial infarction (AMI), also called a heart attack, happens when one of the heart’s arteries becomes blocked and the supply of blood and oxygen to part of the heart muscle is slowed or stopped. When the heart muscle doesn’t get the oxygen and nutrients it needs, the affected heart tissue may die. The heart is a muscle that gets oxygen through blood vessels. Sometimes blood clots can block these blood vessels, and the heart cannot get enough oxygen. This can cause a heart attack.
Percutaneous Coronary Interventions (PCI) are procedures that are among the most effective ways to open blocked blood vessels and help prevent further heart muscle damage. A PCI is performed by a doctor to open the blockage and increase blood flow in blocked blood vessels.
Why is this important?
Improving blood flow to your heart as quickly as possible lessens the damage to your heart muscle. It also can increase your chances of surviving a heart attack. There are three procedures commonly described by the term PCI. These procedures all involve a catheter (a flexible tube) that is inserted, often through your leg, and guided through the blood vessels to the blockage. The three procedures are:
- Angioplasty - a balloon is inflated to open the blood vessel.
- Stenting/Drug-Eluting Stents - a small wire tube called a stent is placed in the blood to hold it open.
- Atherectomy - a blade or laser cuts through and removes the blockage.
How are we doing at providing the best care for patients suffering from heart attack?
The measures show how often patients who meet the criteria with a ST Elevation myocardial infarction received Percutaneous Coronary Interventions within 90 minutes of arrival at our hospital.
The graph shows that for every patient who meets the criteria with a ST Elevation myocardial infarction received the above treatment within 90 minutes of arrival at our hospital. The national average for this measure is 95% and the top performers are at 100%.
What efforts are in place to improve performance?
Each case is reviewed in detail with a multidisciplinary team to assess for every opportunity for improvement and change to process.