Adherence to NSTEMI Guidelines in the Emergency Department: Regression to Reality

Harel Gilutz, Sevatlana Shindel, Ilana Shoham-Vardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background: Adherence to guidelines for the initial treatment of ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction has been thoroughly studied, whereas the study of emergency department (ED) adherence to guidelines for Non-ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction-Acute Coronary Syndrome (NSTEMI-ACS) has been much scarcer. The recommended guidelines for the initial prompt workup and treatment of NSTEMI-ACS remains a challenge. Aim: We studied adherence to guidelines for NSTEMI in the ED. Methods: A single-center, retrospective study of consecutive patients with NSTEMI admitted to a tertiary hospital and discharged alive between March 2013 and March 2014. ED records were manually reviewed for adherence to prespecified parameters. Cases with sudden death, shock, or type-II NSTEMI were excluded. Canadian Triage and Acuity Scale score system was used for triage in the ED. Results: Adherence rates were 33.3%/24.6% of 240 patients for ECG/troponin obtained within 10/60 minutes receptively and 31.3% for anticoagulation within 15 minutes from diagnosis of ACS. Females were less likely to undergo electrocardiography (P = 0.009) or troponin-level tests within the specified timeframe (P = 0.043). Many cardiovascular risk markers were missed. Global Registry of Acute Coronary Events score was not used to risk stratify patients. Conclusions: Prompt identification and early medical treatment of NSTEMI in the ED is lacking. Better computerized medical history assembly, attention to typical and atypical clinical presentation, and the employment of an appropriate cardiologic risk stratification method may unblind the treating teams at the point of care and improve adherence to NSTEMI guidelines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-46
Number of pages7
JournalCritical Pathways in Cardiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • emergency department
  • gender
  • guidelines adherence
  • non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction
  • triage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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