EBUS-TBNA and EUS-FNA: Risk Assessment for Patients Receiving Clopidogrel

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Abstract

Background:

Clopidogrel is widely used for the prevention of thrombotic vascular complications. Its primary potential toxicity is bleeding. Management of clopidogrel therapy for patients undergoing invasive procedures is an area of ongoing study. We sought to evaluate the bleeding risk for patients undergoing needle aspiration biopsy by endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) or esophageal ultrasound (EUS) while taking clopidogrel.

Methods:

Retrospective review of sequential cases of endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration (EBUS-TBNA) and esophageal ultrasound fine needle aspiration (EUS-FNA).

Results:

Three hundred ninety-five consecutive procedures were reviewed. Thirty-seven patients were taking clopidogrel at time of biopsy. The patients taking clopidogrel were significantly older than those in the control group. Two patients (1%) in the control group were admitted for observation, but neither was found to have a significant bleed. There were no clinically significant bleeding complications in either of the study groups.

Conclusions:

It is reasonable to proceed with EBUS-TBNA or EUS-FNA when both, (1) clopidogrel cannot be stopped and, (2) an important diagnostic question is at stake.

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