SCAI 2021: COVID-19 especially harmful for high-risk heart attack patients

Brand new data from the North American COVID-19 Myocardial Infarction (NACMI) registry was presented April 28 at the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography & Interventions (SCAI) 2021 Scientific Sessions.

The findings, published in full in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, were designed to help clinicians gain a better understanding of how, exactly, a COVID-19 diagnosis affects STEMI patients.

As of April 9, 2021, the NACMI registry included data from more than 1,600 patients who received care at dozens of facilities throughout North America. Overall, researchers reported, STEMI patients with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis are more likely to be Hispanic or Black, present with diabetes and undergo guideline-directed medical therapy instead of primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).

In addition, the group observed, STEMI patients have a higher rate of survival when they undergo primary PCI in a timely manner.

Looking specifically at the study’s primary outcome—a composite of all-time mortality, myocardial infarction or stroke—the team found that the rate was 35% for confirmed COVID-19 patients, 14% of suspected COVID-19 patients and 5% for control patients who were actually treated before the pandemic began.

“Leading clinicians and researchers have quickly and efficiently come together to understand the relationship between COVID-19 and heart attacks,” co-lead author Payam Dehghani, MD, of the Prairie Vascular Research Network in Canada, said in a statement. “This registry is an amazing feat of collaboration, speed and scale involving more than 60 sites, and three leading medical societies across the United States and Canada. We’re seeing an alarming trend of the deadly impact of this pandemic on high-risk minority heart attack patients. This ongoing registry’s goal is to help illuminate these disparity trends and inform future preventive and treatment strategies for this COVID-19 era.” 

Click here to read the full analysis in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.