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Primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI) has dramatically changed the outcome of patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). However, despite improvements in interventional technology, registry data show little recent change in the prognosis of patients who survive STEMI, with a significant incidence of cardiogenic shock, heart failure, and cardiac death. Despite a technically successful PPCI procedure, a variable proportion of patients experience suboptimal myocardial reperfusion. Large infarct size and coronary microvascular injury, as the consequence of ischaemia-reperfusion injury and distal embolization of atherothrombotic debris, account for suboptimal long-term prognosis of STEMI patients. In order to address this unmet therapeutic need, a broad-range of device-based treatments has been developed. These device-based therapies can be categorized according to the pathophysiological pathways they target: (i) techniques to prevent distal atherothrombotic embolization, (ii) techniques to prevent or mitigate ischaemia/reperfusion injury, and (iii) techniques to enhance coronary microvascular function/integrity. This review is an overview of these novel technologies with a focus on their pathophysiological background, procedural details, available evidence, and with a critical perspective about their potential future implementation in the clinical care of STEMI patients.

Original publication




Journal article


Eur Heart J Acute Cardiovasc Care

Publication Date



Device-based therapies, Infarct size, Ischaemia–reperfusion injury, Microvascular injury, ST-elevation myocardial infarction