myocardial reperfusionmedical dictionary

Generally, restoration of blood supply to heart tissue which is ischaemic due to decrease in normal blood supply. The decrease may result from any source including atherosclerotic obstruction, narrowing of the artery, or surgical clamping. Reperfusion can be induced to treat ischaemia. Methods include chemical dissolution of an occluding thrombus, administration of vasodilator drugs, angioplasty, catheterization, and artery bypass graft surgery. However, it is thought that reperfusion can itself further damage the ischaemic tissue, causing myocardial reperfusion injury.

(12 Dec 1998)