Randomized Multicenter Comparison of Conventional Anticoagulation Versus Antiplatelet Therapy in Unplanned and Elective Coronary Stenting: The Full Anticoagulation Versus Aspirin and Ticlopidine (FANTASTIC) Study

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Abstract

Background

Dual therapy with ticlopidine and aspirin has been shown to be as effective as or more effective than conventional anticoagulation in patients with an optimal result after implantation of intracoronary metallic stents. However, the safety and efficacy of antiplatelet therapy alone in an unselected population has not been evaluated.

Methods

Patients were randomized to conventional anticoagulation or to treatment with antiplatelet therapy alone. Indications for stenting were classified as elective (decided before the procedure) or unplanned (to salvage failed angioplasty or to optimize the results of balloon angioplasty). After stenting, patients received aspirin and either ticlopidine or conventional anticoagulation (heparin or oral anticoagulant). The primary end point was the occurrence of bleeding or peripheral vascular complications; secondary end points were cardiac events (death, infarction, or stent occlusion) and duration of hospitalization.

Results

In 13 centers, 236 patients were randomized to anticoagulation and 249 to antiplatelet therapy. Stenting was elective in 58% of patients and unplanned in 42%. Stent implantation was successfully achieved in 99% of patients. A primary end point occurred in 33 patients (13.5%) in the antiplatelet group and 48 patients (21%) in the anticoagulation group (odds ratio=0.6 [95% CI 0.36 to 0.98], P=0.03). Major cardiac-related events in electively stented patients were less common (odds ratio=0.23 [95% CI 0.05 to 0.91], P=0.01) in the antiplatelet group (3 of 123, 2.4%) than the anticoagulation group (11 of 111, 9.9%). Hospital stay was significantly shorter in the antiplatelet group (4.3 +/- 3.6 versus 6.4 +/- 3.7 days, P=0.0001).

Conclusions

Antiplatelet therapy after coronary stenting significantly reduced rates of bleeding and subacute stent occlusion compared with conventional anticoagulation. (Circulation. 1998;98:1597-1603.)

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