Aspiration thrombectomy in ST-Elevation myocardial infarction: Further insights from a network meta-analysis of randomized trials

Indian Heart J. Mar-Apr 2021;73(2):161-168. doi: 10.1016/j.ihj.2021.01.006. Epub 2021 Jan 7.


Background: The initial enthusiasm for thrombectomy during percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) of ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) patients has given way to restraint. There has been some limited interest whether it is beneficial in a few selected subgroups. Hence, we performed a network meta-analysis to compare conventional PCI (cPCI), Aspiration or manual thrombectomy (AT) and Mechanical thrombectomy (McT) for clarification.

Methods: Electronic databases were searched for randomized studies that compared AT, McT, or cPCI. A network meta-analysis was performed and odd's ratio (OR) with 95% confidence intervals was generated for major adverse cardiac events (MACE), mortality, myocardial infarction (MI), target vessel revascularization (TVR), stent thrombosis (ST), stroke, left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), myocardial blush grade (MBG) and ST segment resolution (STR).

Results: A total of 43 randomized trials (n = 26,682) were included. The risk of MACE (OR 0.86 95% CI 0.73-1.00), Mortality (OR 0.85 95% CI 0.73-0.99), MI (OR 0.65, 95% CI: 0.44-0.95) and TVR (OR 0.86, 95% CI: 0.74-1.00) were lower with AT compared to cPCI. The risk of ST and stroke was no different with the use of adjunctive AT. MBG, STR, and LVEF improved with the use of AT while the infarct size was no different in the two groups.

Conclusions: Our comprehensive network meta-analysis suggests conflicting outcomes with AT. While Mortality, MACE, MI seem better, there is a suggestion that, Stroke and ST might be worse. Whether AT can still be pursued in any select cases should be further scrutinized.

Keywords: Aspiration thrombectomy; Mechanical thrombectomy; Network meta-analysis; Percutaneous coronary intervention; ST-Segment elevation myocardial infarction.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Network Meta-Analysis
  • Percutaneous Coronary Intervention*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction* / diagnosis
  • ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction* / surgery
  • Stroke Volume
  • Thrombectomy
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ventricular Function, Left