Missing one type of heart attack after-care increases chance of death

Missing any of nine after-care components makes heart attack patients more likely to die after leaving the hospital, according to a study published in European Heart Journal Acute Cardiovascular Care. "There is a clear relationship between the ability to provide comprehensive and timely care, and treatment and improved chance of heart attack survival," lead investigator Chris Gale, M.D., of the School of Medicine at the University of Leeds in the U.K., said in an announcement. Gale and his team focused on nine pathways of care, including acute use of aspirin, pre-hospital electrocardiogram, prescription at hospital discharge of aspirin and timely use of four types of drug for heart attacks. They found that missing any one of the types of care increased a patient's chance of death within a month of discharge by 46 percent, and of dying within a year by 74 percent. Study abstract