Transradial access for primary percutaneous coronary intervention: the next standard of care?

Amoroso G, Kiemeneij F.

Primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI) has been acknowledged by the most recent European guidelines to be the preferred treatment for ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). Patients undergoing PPCI are expected to receive a broad spectrum of anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents, which increases the risk of bleedings, in most cases, at the site of vascular access. The burden of bleeding complications after PPCI is as negative as that of ischemic complications not only on in-hospital morbidity, but also on mid- and long-term survival. Owing to the unique features of the radial artery, transradial approach (TRA) seems able to overcome most of the problems related to vascular access particularly in case of STEMI. In this short review we discuss the results of the latest studies and we highlight not only the safety and feasibility of TRA-PPCI, but also the advantages in terms of morbidity and mortality. We finally report on our experience at OLVG Amsterdam, and how TRA can also change the logistics in case of a PPCI programme (short stay).

Heart. 2010 Sep; 96(17):1341-4