This study sought to assess the contemporary outcomes of patients transferred after receiving fibrinolytic therapy (‘drip-and-ship’) for ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) in the United States.
During 2009-2016, adults (>18 years) with STEMI (>18 years) without cardiac arrest and cardiogenic shock that received fibrinolytic therapy and were subsequently transferred were identified using the National Inpatient Sample (NIS). These admissions were divided into those undergoing fibrinolysis alone, subsequent coronary angiography (CA) without revascularization and subsequent CA with revascularization. Outcomes of interest included in-hospital mortality, resource utilization, and discharge disposition.
A total of 27,454 STEMI admissions receiving a ‘drip-and-ship strategy’, 96.3% and 85.8% received subsequent coronary angiography and revascularization Admissions receiving CA and revascularization were younger, male, and with lower comorbidity. The fibrinolysis alone cohort had higher rates of organ failure, hemorrhagic sequelae, and intracranial hemorrhage. Compared to the fibrinolysis cohort, CA with revascularization (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 0.17 [95% confidence interval {CI} 0.11-0.27]; p < .001) but not CA without revascularization (OR 0.72 [95% CI 0.42-1.21]; p = .21) was associated with lower in-hospital mortality. The fibrinolysis alone cohort had higher use of do-not-resuscitate status (12.8%) and fewer discharges to home (56.6%) compared to cohorts undergoing CA without (1.7%; 86.9%) and with (0.3% and 91.2%) revascularization, respectively. Presence of complications, do-not-resuscitate status, and higher comorbidity were predictive of lower CA and revascularization use.
Fibrinolysis with subsequent revascularization is associated with excellent outcomes in STEMI. Admissions receiving fibrinolysis alone were systematically different, sicker and had poorer outcomes.

Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier B.V.