Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jroyalcgpracBJGP at RCGPBJGP at PubMed CentralJ R Coll Gen Pract at PubMed CentralRCGP homepage
J R Coll Gen Pract. 1976 September; 26(170): 648–653.
PMCID: PMC2158356

Analysis of time intervals involved in admission to a coronary care unit


Time intervals between the onset of the presenting symptom (chest pain) and arrival in a coronary care unit were studied for 221 admissions arranged by conventional means. The median figure for “patient delay” was 60 minutes, for “general-practitioner delay” 20 minutes, for “ambulance delay” 30 minutes, and for “transit delay” 30 minutes. The median “total delay” was three hours 30 minutes.

Only 4·5 per cent of the patients were under intensive coronary care within one hour, the time of the highest mortality risk. A mobile coronary service should be capable of increasing the proportion of patients brought under special care within the first hour, but the time taken by the patient to realise the nature of the emergency and summon aid is likely to remain the most critical factor.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (643K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Armstrong A, Duncan B, Oliver MF, Julian DG, Donald KW, Fulton M, Lutz W, Morrison SL. Natural history of acute coronary heart attacks. A community study. Br Heart J. 1972 Jan;34(1):67–80. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Gilchrist IC. Factors affecting admission to a coronary care unit. Br Med J. 1971 Oct 16;4(5780):153–156. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Gilchrist IC. Patient delay before treatment of myocardial infarction. Br Med J. 1973 Mar 3;1(5852):535–537. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Hackett TP, Cassem NH. Factors contributing to delay in responding to the signs and symptoms of acute myocardial infarction. Am J Cardiol. 1969 Nov;24(5):651–658. [PubMed]
  • Kernohan RJ, McGucken RB. Mobile intensive care in myocardial infarction. Br Med J. 1968 Jul 20;3(5611):178–180. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Lawrie DM, Greenwood TW, Goddard M, Harvey AC, Donald KW, Julian DG, Oliver MF. A coronary-care unit in the routine management of acute myocardial infarction. Lancet. 1967 Jul 15;2(7507):109–114. [PubMed]
  • McNeilly RH, Pemberton J. Duration of last attack in 998 fatal cases of coronary artery disease and its relation to possible cardiac resuscitation. Br Med J. 1968 Jul 20;3(5611):139–142. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Moss AJ, Goldstein S. The pre-hospital phase of acute myocadial infarction. Circulation. 1970 May;41(5):737–742. [PubMed]
  • Pantridge JF, Geddes JS. A mobile intensive-care unit in the management of myocardial infarction. Lancet. 1967 Aug 5;2(7510):271–273. [PubMed]
  • Restieaux N, Bray C, Bullard H, Murray M, Robinson J, Brigden W, McDonald L. 150 Patients with cardiac infarction treated in a coronary unit. Lancet. 1967 Jun 17;1(7503):1285–1289. [PubMed]
  • Shaw G, Groden B, Hastings E. Coronary care in a General Hospital. Results and observations on the first year's work in the unit in the Southern General Hospital, Glasgow. Scott Med J. 1971 Mar;16(3):173–182. [PubMed]
  • Walsh MJ, Shivalingappa G, Scaria K, Morrison C, Kumar B, Farnan C, Chaturvedi NC, Boyle DM, Barber JM. Mobile coronary care. Br Heart J. 1972 Jul;34(7):701–704. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from The Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners are provided here courtesy of Royal College of General Practitioners