January 2, 1981

Intracoronary thrombolysis to abort heart attacks: Wave of the future?

JAMA. 1981;245(1):11-13. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03310260005001

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


The audience emitted a collective gasp. On a movie screen in front of them, a nasty clot was high-tailing it through a coronary artery. Within about 30 s, the clot had dissolved.

The man who had caused the clot lysis—William Ganz, MD, professor of medicine at UCLA and senior research scientist, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles—modestly denied "planning" the event that his extraordinary film footage captured so that it would occur at that precise moment. There is no clinical marker for mobilization of the thrombus, he said, but generally it will get going if you infuse a thrombolytic agent as close to its exact location as possible.

Ganz and colleagues use a standard catheter through which they advance a special soft catheter (diameter, 0.022 in) to the site of the clot. They then infuse Thrombolysin (a combination of streptokinase and plasminogen) through the special catheter at a dosage of 2,000