Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2014 Aug;46(2):198-205. doi: 10.1093/ejcts/ezt571. Epub 2014 Jan 12.

Perioperative outcomes of cardiac surgery patients with ongoing ticagrelor therapy: boon and bane of a new drug.

Author information

  • 1Department of Anesthesiology, Emergency and Intensive Care Medicine, Georg-August-University Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany
  • 2Department of Anesthesiology, Emergency and Intensive Care Medicine, Georg-August-University Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany.
  • 3Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Georg-August-University Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany.
  • 4Department of Cardiothoracic Transplantation and Mechanical Support, Brompton and Harefield Hospital, Harefield, London, UK.
  • 5Department of Cardiology and Respiratory Medicine, Georg-August-University Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany.



Ticagrelor (Brilique®) is a novel reversible platelet inhibitor at P2Y12 receptor used in patients with acute coronary syndrome and patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions. Unlike clopidogrel (Plavix®), ticagrelor has a quicker offset of action, and therefore, it seems that platelet function recovers faster on discontinuation of therapy. These drugs sometimes cannot be stopped before coronary artery bypass grafting due to the risk of stent thrombosis or in case of emergency operations. Therefore, we investigated whether the continued preoperative use of ticagrelor influences the perioperative course of cardiac surgical patients.


The perioperative course and clinical outcomes of patients preoperatively receiving ticagrelor + acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) (n = 32) or clopidogrel + ASA (n = 49) until cardiac surgery, performed at University of Goettingen between January 2012 and December 2012, were studied. The study was designed as a retrospective observational study. The observation period started with the surgery and ended after 3 days. P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.


Preoperative data and intraoperative characteristics were almost similar among the groups. In the first 24 h, the median blood loss was 850 [780-1600] ml in the ticagrelor group and 680 [400-860] ml in the clopidogrel group (P = 0.0006). Furthermore, the median red blood cell transfusion (P = 0.0031), the median pooled platelet transfusion (P = 0.0012), the median prothrombin complex concentrate use (P = 0.0114) and the median fibrinogen use (P = 0.0118) were significantly higher in the ticagrelor group compared with the clopidogrel group. However, there was no statistical significance between the two groups regarding intensive care unit and hospital stay, mechanical ventilation time, incidence of acute kidney injury and mortality. Hence, a tendency towards more rethoracotomies due to bleeding in the ticagrelor group was observed (P = 0.0632).


In cardiac surgical patients who are treated with ticagrelor + ASA until surgery, ticagrelor therapy is associated with a significantly higher blood loss, a significantly higher use of blood products and coagulation factors and higher incidence of rethoracotomies for bleeding compared with patients treated with clopidogrel + ASA.

© The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.


CABG; Continued ticagrelor application; Perioperative outcome

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk