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Clin Cardiol. 2012 Apr;35(4):200-4. doi: 10.1002/clc.20975. Epub 2011 Dec 6.

Intraaortic balloon pump: incidence and predictors of complications in the Florence registry.

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Intensive Cardiac Care Unit, Heart and Vessel Department, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Careggi, Florence, Italy.



The intraaortic balloon pump (IABP) is the most commonly used mechanical circulatory support for patients with acute coronary syndromes and cardiogenic shock. Nevertheless, IABP-related complications are still frequent and associated with a poor prognosis.


To prospectively assess the incidence and predictors of complications in patients treated with IABP.


A total of 481 patients treated with IABP were prospectively enrolled in our registry (the Florence Registry). At multivariable logistic regression analysis the following variables were independent predictors for complications (when adjusted for age >75 years, eGFR and time length of IABP support): use of inotropes (OR 2.450, P < 0.017), nadir platelet count (1000/µL step; OR 0.990, P < 0.001), admission lactate (OR 1.175, P = 0.003). Nadir platelet count showed a negative correlation with length of time of IABP implantation (r-0.31; P < 0.001). A nadir platelet count cutoff value of less than 120,000 was identified using a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve for the development of complications (area under the curve [AUC] 0.70; P < 0.001).


Complications were observed in the 13.1%, among whom 33 of 63 showed major bleeding. The incidence of complications was higher in patients aged >75 years (P = 0.015) and in those who had an IABP implanted for more than 24 hours (P = 0.001). Patients with complications showed an in Intensive Cardiac Care Unit (ICCU) mortality higher than patients who did not (44.4% vs 17.2%, P < 0.001).


In consecutive patients treated with IABP support, the degree of hemodynamic impairment and the decrease in platelet count were independent predictors of complications, whose development was associated with higher in-ICCU mortality.

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