There are over 1 × 101 acute myocardial infarctions (AMI) each year in the U.S. with more than 400,000 of these resulting in death. Early identification of AMI and prompt treatment has been shown to significantly improve clinical outcomes. Experimental and clinical studies have shown that most of the irreversible damage to the myocardium occurs during the first 2 hr after coronary occlusion. Therefore, the early arrival at the hospital for a reliable diagnosis and initiation of treatment is paramount to improve the outcomes of myocardial infarction. However, despite efforts at educating the public over the past decade, the mean time from AMI symptom onset to arrival at a hospital for treatment has remained, disappointingly, at 2.5 to 3.0 hr. The largest proportion of the total prehospital delay is the interval between the onset of symptoms and the decision to seek medical treatment. If...

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