Thrombolytics are medicines that rapidly dissolve a blood clot. They are used when a blood clot causes an emergency,
such as a heart attack or stroke. These clot-busting medicines help blood to flow normally again.
Thrombolytics are used as soon as possible after a heart attack or stroke. These medicines are used in the hospital. They are
typically given through a vein in the hand or arm.
One example of this medicine is tissue plasminogen
These medicines can greatly increase the
risk of bleeding, so they are used only in very specific situations where the
risk of bleeding can be balanced against the risks of not dissolving the blood
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O'Gara PT, et al. (2013). 2013 ACCF/AHA guideline for the management of ST-elevation myocardial infarction: Executive summary. A report of the American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines. Circulation, 127(4): e362-e425.
ByHealthwise Staff Primary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerJeffrey S. Ginsberg, MD - Hematology