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Temple University Hospital Is the Site of a National Study That Increases the Survival Rate of Heart Attack Victims

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Patients with a potentially deadly heart attack complication survived at significantly higher rates when treated with a specific protocol offered at selected sites around the country, including Temple University Hospital, according to trial results announced today, May 21.

Temple University Hospital was one of 65 sites enrolled in the National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative (NationalCSI) study that showed 72 percent of patients with cardiogenic shock survived their heart attack when treated with the protocol. Researchers announced the trial results today, May 21, at the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions (SCAI) 2019 Scientific Sessions. Typical survival rate from this deadly complication has historically been around 50 percent.

Temple University Hospital campus

In heart attack patients experiencing cardiogenic shock, the heart is too weak to pump blood to vital organs and the rest of the body. The scenario deprives vital organs of sufficient blood supply, causing them to go into shock and, eventually, cease functioning.

“Temple University Hospital is pleased to help move the needle in survival from heart attacks,” said Brian O’Neill, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University, who is leading the protocol implementation at Temple University Hospital. “Our care teams have adopted this protocol skillfully and effectively, and we’re happy to see the results in our patients.”

The protocol, available at henryford.com/cardiogenicshock, entails quickly recognizing the condition, then inserting a straw-sized pump into the heart to keep blood flowing throughout the body. The Impella pump, a U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved device, is inserted through a catheter in the groin as soon as the patient arrives at the hospital. Doctors then treat the cause of the heart attack, either inserting a stent, removing a clot or taking other necessary action.

National study results released today, May 21, involved doctors across the country at sites ranging from community hospitals to large academic centers. They used the protocol to treat 171 patients — 77 percent male with an average age of 63 years — between July 2016 and February 2019. They also isolated predictive markers that indicate a patient’s condition, an invaluable tool in determining treatment.

NationalCSI researchers and cardiologists based at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit are leading the study, the first large-scale clinical trial of a national cardiogenic shock treatment protocol. It is the second iteration of a smaller pilot study conducted in southeast Michigan and is expected to continue at Temple University Hospital and other locations for at least two more years.

“We’re very pleased that these preliminary trial results show this protocol can be replicated in many different hospital settings to improve survival in cardiogenic shock,” said Henry Ford Health System cardiologist Dr. Babar Basir, who is leading the effort in Detroit with pioneering cardiologist William W. O’Neill.

Dr. William W. O’Neill, Medical Director of the Henry Ford Health System Center for Structural Heart Disease, said he expects continued improvements could raise the survival rate to more than 80 percent.

“Even though every hospital has their own standards, we found that when physicians across the country recognize the signs of shock early and follow this protocol, it can save lives,” Dr. William W. O’Neill said. “We’re honored to be part of this life-saving work.”