Is platelet inhibition due to thienopyridines increased in elderly patients, in patients with previous stroke and patients with low body weight as a possible explanation of an increased bleeding risk?
Background The TRITON-TIMI 38 study has identified three subgroups of patients with a higher risk of bleeding during treatment with the thienopyridine prasugrel: patients with a history of stroke or transient ischaemic attack (TIA), patients ≥75 years and patients with a body weight <60 kg. However, the underlying pathobiology leading to this increased bleeding risk remains to be elucidated. The higher bleeding rate may be due to a stronger prasugrelinduced inhibition of platelet aggregation in these subgroups. The aim of the present study was to determine whether on-treatment platelet reactivity is lower in these risk subgroups as compared with other patients in a large cohort on the thienopyridine clopidogrel undergoing elective coronary stenting. Methods A total of 1069 consecutive patients were enrolled. On-clopidogrel platelet reactivity was measured in parallel by light transmittance aggregometry, the Verify- Now®P2Y12 assay and the PFA-100 collagen/ADP cartridge. Results Fourteen patients (1.5%) had a prior history of stroke or TIA, 138 patients (14.5%) were older than 75 years and 30 patients (3.2%) had a body weight <60 kg. Age ≥75 years and a history of stroke were independent predictors of a higher on-treatment platelet reactivity. In contrast, a body weight <60 kg was significantly associated with a lower on-treatment platelet reactivity. Conclusion In two high-risk subgroups for bleeding, patients ≥75 years and patients with previous stroke, onclopidogrel platelet reactivity is increased. In contrast, in patients with a low body weight, on-clopidogrel platelet reactivity is decreased, suggesting that a stronger response to a thienopyridine might only lead to more bleeds in patients with low body weight.