, Volume 35, Issue 2, pp 178-184
Date: 26 Jul 2012

Major bleeding in patients undergoing PCI and triple or dual antithrombotic therapy: a parallel-cohort study

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The combination of oral anticoagulants with dual antiplatelet therapy (DAT) in patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention with stent implantation (PCI-stenting) is subject to controversy due to the high risk of bleeding. In this multicenter retrospective parallel-group study, we compared the rate of adverse events in chronically anticoagulated patients who underwent PCI-stenting and were discharged on aspirin, clopidogrel and warfarin (triple antithrombotic therapy [TT] group) and were followed in Italian anticoagulation centers, with a parallel cohort of patients who underwent PCI-stenting and were discharged on DAT group. The primary endpoint was the incidence of major bleeding while the patients were in TT and DAT. A secondary endpoint was the occurrence of major ischemic adverse events (MACEs). The final cohort consisted of 229 TT patients and 231 DAT patients followed up for 6 and 7 months, respectively. There were 11 (4.8 %; 9.1 % patient/years) major bleeding events in the TT group (1 was fatal) as compared to 1 (0.4 %; 0.7 % patient/years) event in the DAT group (p = 0.003). Of the 28 (6.1 %) MACE recorded during the follow-up, 12 (5.2 %) occurred in the TT group and 16 (6.9 %) in the DAT group. In conclusion, despite close monitoring of anticoagulated patients in dedicated centers, the major bleeding incidence remains high among unselected patients undergoing PCI-stenting and treated with TT. Any efforts to minimize these events should be pursued.

This study was conducted on behalf of Italian Federation of Thrombosis Centers (FCSA).