Reducing use of triple therapy after percutaneous coronary intervention: Results from a hospital-wide quality improvement initiative

Catheter Cardiovasc Interv. 2022 Nov;100(6):941-947. doi: 10.1002/ccd.30412. Epub 2022 Oct 2.


Background: Trials have shown that for patients on oral anticoagulants (OAC), a short course of dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) with OAC reduces post-percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) bleeding without increasing ischemic events. Adoption of this strategy has been variable. We evaluated the impact of an institutional quality improvement (QI) initiative to reduce the use of triple therapy (TT, OAC + DAPT) and improve discharge communication post-PCI.

Methods: A hospital-wide QI initiative was developed to minimize time on TT post-PCI. Interventions included institutional guidelines emphasizing discharge on OAC with a P2Y12 inhibitor or reducing TT duration to ≤30 days, changes to the computerized decision-support system, and an educational curriculum for house staff. PCI patients 18 months before and after the initiative (2017-2020) were reviewed along with a faculty survey assessing prescribing practices to evaluate the efficacy of the interventions.

Results: Among 2797 PCIs reviewed, 431 were included based on OAC at discharge: 24.9% female, 80.1% White, and the mean age was 74 years. The most common indications for OAC were atrial fibrillation (70.1%) and left ventricular dysfunction (11.4%). Mean duration of TT decreased (58.7-37.8 days, p = 0.02) and patients discharged on TT ≤ 30 days increased (24%-37%, p = 0.019) after intervention. Of surveyed faculty (n = 20), 75.0% reported familiarity with the guidelines and 57.9% reported using them to make therapy decisions.

Conclusions: Following the implementation of a QI initiative, fewer patients were discharged on TT and shorter durations of TT were used. Similar initiatives should be considered at institutions with the prevalent use of TT post-PCI.

Keywords: anticoagulation; coronary artery disease; percutaneous coronary intervention; pharmacotherapy; quality improvement.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Anticoagulants / adverse effects
  • Atrial Fibrillation* / drug therapy
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / adverse effects
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Percutaneous Coronary Intervention* / adverse effects
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Quality Improvement
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anticoagulants
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors
  • Fibrinolytic Agents