Goel, M., Dodge Jr, J. T., Rizzo, M., McLean, C., Ryan, K. A., Daley, W. L., Cannon, C. P., Gibson, C. M. The Open Artery Hypothesis: Past, Present, and Future J Thromb Thrombolysis. 1998;5(2):101-112.

The survival benefit following a reperfusion strategy, be it pharmacologic or mechanical, appears to be due to both full and early reperfusion. While the TIMI Flow Grade classification scheme has been a useful tool to assess coronary blood flow in acute syndromes, it has several limitations. A newer method of assessing coronary blood flow called the Corrected TIMI Frame Count method has the following advantages: (1) it is a continuous quantitative variable rather than a categorical qualitative variable; (2) the flow in the non-culprit artery is not assumed to be normal as it is in the assessment of TIMI Grade 3 Flow; (3) there is simplified reporting of reperfusion efficacy through the use of a single number instead of expressing the data in 2 to 4 categories; (4) because a single number rather than 4 categories is used to report the data, there is more efficient use of the dataset by increasing the statistical power; and finally (5) coronary flow can be expressed in intuitive terms (e.g. time or cm/sec for strategy A versus time or cm/sec for strategy B). This paper reviews the history of the open artery hypothesis and recent advances in the field.