Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors: questioning indications and treatment algorithms

Edo Kaluski, Bunyad Haider, Olga Milo-Cotter, Marc Klapholz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

1 Scopus citations


Glycoprotein inhibitors (GPI) are viewed as beneficial adjunctive pharmacotherapy agents for percutaneous coronary interventions (PCIs). The major benefit of GPI is derived from the reduction of ischemic events (mostly non-Q-wave myocardial infarctions) during PCI. There is no single randomized clinical trial demonstrating that any of these agents significantly reduces mortality in any clinical subset of patients. Studies of sustained oral GPI resulted in excessive death and myocardial infarctions. Reduction of ischemic end points was counteracted by excessive bleeding, vascular complications, and thrombocytopenia. These complications bear considerable medical and economic impact. The Acute Catheterization and Early Intervention Triage Strategy trial demonstrated that GPI, when added to heparin, enoxaparine, or bivalirudin, do not reduce mortality or ischemic events but significantly increase bleeding complications. Major bleeding resulted in threefold mortality at 1 year. In view of available data, the use of GPI should be limited to moderate-risk to high-risk PCI patients with low bleeding propensity. Protocols of abbreviated GPI administration and careful bleeding surveillance, in conjunction with lower doses of unfractionated heparin or new and possibly safer antithrombins, can potentially improve patient safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-288
Number of pages8
JournalCardiovascular Revascularization Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


  • Bleeding
  • Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa
  • Inhibitors
  • Thrombocytopenia
  • Treatment algorithms

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