We reviewed data from the National Registry of Myocardial Infarction-2 to determine the differences in characteristics and outcomes in patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) who have undergone previous coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), and those who have not, and between post-CABG patients who were treated with alteplase (recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator [rt-PA]) and those who were treated with primary percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA). Demographic, therapeutic, and outcome data from patients with AMI were collected at > 1,000 hospitals in the United States in collaboration with National Registry of Myocardial Infarction-2. Of the 45,925 patients receiving reperfusion therapy, 2,544 of the 39,574 treated with rt-PA (6.4%) had a history of CABG, and 375 of the 6,351 treated with primary PTCA (5.9%) had a history of CABG. Patients with a history of CABG were older, more likely to be men, and had more comorbidities, but prior CABG was still an independent predictor of mortality after multivariate regression analysis (odds ratio 1.23; 95% confidence interval 1.05 to 1.44). Among the post-CABG patients who received rT-PA or underwent PTCA, there was no significant difference in in-hospital mortality rate or the combined end point of death and nonfatal stroke. Thus, (1) prior CABG is an independent predictor of mortality, and (2) for post-CABG patients with AMI who are not in shock and who are lytic-eligible, reperfusion therapy with rt-PA and PTCA result in similar outcomes with regard to in-hospital mortality and the combined end point of death and nonfatal stroke.