Kounis syndrome: A case report and literature review of pre-hospital treatment


Kounis syndrome
allergic acute coronary syndrome
allergic myocardial infarction

How to Cite

Di Toro ML, Stub D. Kounis syndrome: A case report and literature review of pre-hospital treatment. Australasian Journal of Paramedicine [Internet]. 2018Nov.4 [cited 2022Nov.28];15(4). Available from: https://ajp.paramedics.org/index.php/ajp/article/view/614



Kounis syndrome is an uncommon clinical presentation of acute coronary syndrome secondary to an allergic or hypersensitivity reaction, especially anaphylaxis. It results when inflammatory mediators are released following mast cell activation, some of these mediators cause coronary artery vasospasm and may initiate thrombus formation in susceptible individuals. Although Kounis syndrome is becoming more widely known, many clinicians are still unaware of its existence. We present a case report and a literature review of the pre-hospital treatment of Kounis syndrome by emergency medical services.


A literature search of the EMBASE, MEDLINE and PubMed electronic medical databases was conducted using the terms ‘Kounis syndrome’, ‘allergic acute coronary syndrome’ and ‘allergic myocardial infarction’. The purpose of the literature search was to identify the pre-hospital treatment of Kounis syndrome by emergency medical services. We included case reports of Kounis syndrome that described the medical treatment provided by emergency medical services, published any time up to October, 2017.


Anaphylaxis is the most commonly treated component of Kounis syndrome by emergency medical services (66% of reported cases). Both components of Kounis syndrome, anaphylaxis and acute coronary syndrome, were treated in 16% of reported cases. No specific treatment was provided for either component of Kounis syndrome in 16% of reported cases.


The pre-hospital treatment of Kounis syndrome by emergency medical services is infrequently reported in the literature. Kounis syndrome involves two distinct clinical conditions, both of which should be considered during treatment.



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