Objectives: We assessed the incidence, predictors, and outcomes of gastrointestinal bleeding (GIB) in patients with acute coronary syndromes (ACS).
Background: GIB is a potential hemorrhagic complication in patients with ACS treated with antithrombotic and/or antiplatelet medications. The clinical outcomes associated with GIB in this setting have not been systematically studied.
Methods: In the ACUITY (Acute Catheterization and Urgent Intervention Triage Strategy) trial, 13,819 patients with moderate- and high-risk ACS, enrolled at 450 centers in 17 countries between August 2003 and December 2005, were randomized to the open-label use of 1 of 3 antithrombin regimens (heparin plus a glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor, bivalirudin plus a glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor, or bivalirudin monotherapy).
Results: GIB within 30 days occurred in 178 patients (1.3%). Older age, baseline anemia, longer duration of study drug administration before angiogram, smoking, ST-segment deviation>or=1 mm, and diabetes were identified as independent predictors of GIB. On multivariable analysis, GIB was strongly associated with 30-day all-cause mortality (hazard ratio [HR]: 4.87 [interquartile range (IQR) 2.61 to 9.08], p<0.0001), cardiac mortality (HR: 5.35 [IQR 2.71 to 10.59], p<0.0001), and composite ischemia (HR: 1.94 [IQR 1.14 to 3.30], p=0.014), as well as with 1-year all-cause mortality (HR: 3.97 [IQR 2.64 to 5.99], p<0.0001), cardiac mortality (HR: 3.77 [IQR 2.14 to 6.63], p<0.0001), myocardial infarction (HR: 1.74 [IQR 1.01 to 3.02], p=0.047), and composite ischemia (HR: 1.90 [IQR 1.37 to 2.64], p=0.0001). Patients who experienced GIB had significantly higher rates of stent thrombosis compared with patients without GIB (5.8% vs. 2.4%, p=0.009).
Conclusions: GIB is a serious condition in the scenario of ACS and is independently associated with mortality and ischemic complications.