Large early variation of residual platelet reactivity in Acute Coronary Syndrome patients treated with clopidogrel: results from Assessing Platelet Activity in Coronary Heart Disease (APACHE)

Thromb Res. 2015 Aug;136(2):335-40. doi: 10.1016/j.thromres.2015.05.021. Epub 2015 May 22.


Introduction: There is a large inter-individual variation in response to clopidogrel treatment and previous studies have indicated higher risk of thrombotic events in patients with high residual platelet reactivity (HRPR), but the optimal time-point for testing is not established. The aim of this study was to investigate the optimal time-point for aggregometry testing and the risk of major adverse cardiac events associated with HRPR.

Method and results: We included 125 patients with ACS (73 with STEMI, and 71 received abciximab). The prevalence of HRPR varied substantially over time. The rate of HRPR in patients treated and not treated with abciximab were 43% vs 67% (p=0.01) before, 2% vs 23% (p=0.001) 6-8h after, 8% vs 9% (p=0.749) 3days after, and 23% vs 12% (p=0.138) 7-9 days after loading dose of clopidogrel. We found HRPR in 18% of the patients but only four ischemic events during 6months follow-up, with no significant difference between HRPR patients compared to the rest of the population. There were 3 TIMI major bleedings, all of which occurred in the low residual platelet reactivity (LRPR) group.

Conclusion: There is a large variation in platelet reactivity over time, also depending on adjunctive therapy, which has a large impact on optimal time-point for assessment. We found HRPR in almost 1 in 5 patients, but very few MACE, and not significantly higher in HRPR patients. In a contemporary ACS population, with low risk for stent thrombosis, the predictive value of HRPR for ischemic events will probably be low.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acute Coronary Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Acute Coronary Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Acute Coronary Syndrome / physiopathology
  • Aged
  • Clopidogrel
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Platelet Aggregation / drug effects*
  • Platelet Count / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Ticlopidine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ticlopidine / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Clopidogrel
  • Ticlopidine