Efficacy and safety of bivalirudin in patients receiving clopidogrel therapy after diagnostic angiography for percutaneous coronary intervention in acute coronary syndromes

Dmitriy N Feldman, Robert M Minutello, Geoffrey Bergman, Issam Moussa, S Chiu Wong
Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions 2010 October 1, 76 (4): 513-24

OBJECTIVES: This study sought to investigate if the efficacy of bivalirudin monotherapy is similar to heparin plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibition in patients with acute coronary syndromes (ACS) treated with clopidogrel following diagnostic angiography.

BACKGROUND: Prior trials have demonstrated that peri-procedural bivalirudin therapy confers similar efficacy as heparin plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors, while lowering the risk of bleeding complications in ACS patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI). However, the incidence of adverse ischemic events post-PCI appeared to be higher in patients receiving bivalirudin without adequate pretreatment with clopidogrel.

METHODS: Using the 2004/2005 Cornell Angioplasty Registry, we evaluated 980 consecutive patients undergoing urgent PCI for UA/NSTEMI who were treated with either bivalirudin or UFH plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor. We excluded patients who were on chronic clopidogrel therapy or received clopidogrel pretreatment prior to angiography. All patients received a clopidogrel load (≥300-mg dose) immediately before or after the PCI. Long-term all-cause mortality was obtained for 100% of patients, with a mean follow-up of 24.6 ± 7.7 months.

RESULTS: Of the 980 study patients, 461 (47.0%) were treated with bivalirudin and 519 (53.0%) patients received UFH plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor. DES were used in 88% of PCI; 45% of patients presented with NSTEMI. The incidence of in-hospital death (0.4% vs. 0.2%, P = 0.604), post-procedural MI (6.9% vs. 5.4%, P = 0.351), and MACE including death, stroke, emergent CABG/PCI, and MI (7.6% vs. 5.8%, P = 0.304) were similar in patients treated with bivalirudin versus UFH plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors, respectively. The incidence of in-hospital stent thrombosis was similar (0.7% vs. 0%, P = 0.104), while major (0.9% vs. 2.9%, P = 0.034) and minor bleeding (10.4% vs. 18.9%, P < 0.001) was reduced in the bivalirudin-treated group. By two-years of follow-up, after propensity-score adjusted multivariate Cox regression analysis, there was no significant difference in long-term mortality between the two groups (HR 1.18; 95%CI 0.64-2.19, P = 0.598).

CONCLUSIONS: In patients presenting with ACS and receiving clopidogrel treatment after angiography (before or within 30 min of PCI), peri-procedural bivalirudin monotherapy suppresses acute and long-term adverse events to a similar extent as does UFH plus GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors, while significantly lowering the risk of bleeding complications.

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