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Clinical Investigations: CARDIOLOGY |

Impact of Tirofiban on Angiographic Morphologic Features of High-Burden Thrombus Formation During Direct Percutaneous Coronary Intervention and Short-term Outcomes*

Hon-Kan Yip; Chiung-Jen Wu; Hsueh-Wen Chang; Yuan-Kai Hsieh; Chih-Yuan Fang; Shyh-Ming Chen; Mien-Cheng Chen
Author and Funding Information

*From the Division of Cardiology (Drs. Yip, Wu, Hsieh, Fang, S.-M. Chen, and M.-C. Chen), Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Republic of China; and the Department of Biological Sciences (Dr. Chang), National Sun Yat-Sen University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Republic of China.

Correspondence to: Mien-Cheng Chen, MD, Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Kaohsiung, 123, Ta Pei Rd, Niao Sung Hsiang, Kaohsiung Hsien, 83301, Taiwan, Republic of China; e-mail: chenmien@kinghenry.com.tw



Chest. 2003;124(3):962-968. doi:10.1378/chest.124.3.962
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Background: Recently, we demonstrated that angiographic morphologic features of high-burden thrombus formation are independent predictors of combined slow flow (ie, Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction [TIMI] grade 2) and no reflow (ie, ≤ TIMI grade 1) in the infarct-related artery (IRA) after direct percutaneous coronary intervention (d-PCI) for the treatment of acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Current data have demonstrated that when administered in conjunction with PCI for acute coronary syndrome, platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors can provide additional clinical benefits. Thus, we hypothesized that after pretreatment with tirofiban, angiographic morphologic features of high-burden thrombus formation would no longer be independent predictors of combined slow flow and no reflow after treatment with d-PCI.

Methods and results: Between January 2001 and April 2002, tirofiban was administered to 210 consecutive patients with ST-segment elevated AMI before coronary angiography was performed, and 84 patients (40.0%) were found to have high-burden thrombus formation in the IRA. The TIMI flow grade of the IRA was assessed immediately after the performance of d-PCI, and the 30-day clinical outcomes were evaluated prospectively. The incidence of restoration of normal coronary flow in the IRA was 83.6%. Three baseline angiographic morphologic features indicating high-burden thrombus formation, including (1) the cutoff pattern of occlusion in the IRA (p = 0.0001), (2) the accumulated thrombus proximal to the occlusion (p = 0.0001), and (3) a reference lumen diameter of the IRA of ≥ 4.0 mm (p = 0.001), were independent predictors of combined slow flow and no reflow. In stratified analysis, the rates of slow flow and no reflow after d-PCI rose rapidly as the number of independent predictors increased (0 predictors, 3.8%; 1 predictor, 29.0%; and 2 predictors, 70.6%). The overall 30-day mortality rate was 6.7%. The mortality rate was significantly higher in patients with TIMI flow lower than or equal to grade 2 than in those with TIMI grade 3 flow (15% vs 1.3%, respectively; p = 0.003).

Conclusions: Tirofiban did not provide additional clinical benefits when administered in conjunction with d-PCI for AMI, even in the subgroup of patients with a high-burden thrombus. Those distinct angiographic morphologic features of high-burden thrombus formation remained as independent predictors of combined slow flow and no reflow after d-PCI, and were independent of the use of tirofiban.


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