Platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors in acute coronary syndromes

M J Quinn, D J Moliterno
Minerva Cardioangiologica 2002, 50 (5): 547-53
Antagonists of the platelet fibrinogen receptor glycoprotein IIb/IIIa are potent inhibitors of platelet function and provide marked protection from ischemic events in patients undergoing PCI. These agents are also of benefit in patients with unstable angina or non-ST segment elevation myocardial infarction (MI) and provide a 9% reduction in the combined endpoint of 30-day death or MI. This benefit is most marked in patients undergoing early PCI or those at increased risk due to history of diabetes or elevation of the cardiac marker troponin. Based on these findings, the combined American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology guidelines on the management of unstable angina and non-ST segment elevation MI recommend intravenous GPIIb/IIIa in patients in whom PCI is planned particularly those with elevated troponin or diabetes. The use of these agents is associated with a slight increase in major bleeding and in rare instances thrombocytopenia that usually resolves quickly after therapy is discontinued.

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