Objectives: Patients undergoing PCI early after fibrinolytic therapy are at high risk for both thrombotic and bleeding complications. We sought to assess the pharmacodynamic effects of ticagrelor versus clopidogrel in the fibrinolytic-treated STEMI patients undergoing early PCI.
Methods and results: Patients undergoing PCI within 24 hours of tenecteplase (TNK), aspirin, and clopidogrel for STEMI were randomized to receive additional clopidogrel 300 mg followed by 75 mg daily or ticagrelor 180 mg followed by 90 mg twice daily. The platelet reactivity units (PRU) were measured with the VerifyNow Assay before study drug administration (baseline) at 4 and 24 hours post-PCI. The primary end point was PRU ≤208 at 4 hours. A total of 140 patients (74 in ticagrelor and 66 in clopidogrel group) were enrolled. The mean PRU values at baseline were similar for the 2 groups (257.8±52.9 vs 259.5±56.7, P=.85, respectively). Post-PCI, patients on ticagrelor, compared to those on clopidogrel, had significantly lower PRU at 4 hours (78.7±88 vs 193.6±86.5, respectively, P<.001) and at 24 hours (34.5±35.0 and 153.5±75.5, respectively, P<.001). The primary end point was observed in 87.8% (n=65) in the ticagrelor-treated patients compared to 57.6% (n=38) of clopidogrel-treated patients, P<.001.
Conclusion: Fibrinolysis-treated STEMI patients who received clopidogrel and aspirin at the time of fibrinolysis and were undergoing early PCI frequently had PRU >208. In this high-risk population, ticagrelor provides more prompt and potent platelet inhibition compared with clopidogrel (Funded by Astra Zeneca; NCT01930591, https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01930591).
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