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See 1 citation in J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2006:

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2006 Mar;131(3):686-92. Epub 2006 Jan 31.

Anticoagulation with bivalirudin for off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting: the results of the EVOLUTION-OFF study.

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Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio 44195, USA.



Unfractionated heparin has many shortcomings, including indirect and partial inhibition of thrombin, antibody formation, and platelet activation. Bivalirudin, a short-acting direct thrombin inhibitor, avoids these limitations and has superior outcomes during percutaneous revascularization. This trial was performed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of bivalirudin in off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting.


An open-label, multicenter randomized trial compared heparin with protamine reversal to bivalirudin in patients undergoing off-pump coronary artery bypass. The primary objective was safety as demonstrated by similar rates of procedural success defined as freedom from a composite of death, myocardial infarction, stroke, and repeat revascularization. Twenty-one institutions randomized 105 patients to receive bivalirudin and 52 patients to receive heparin.


The mean age was 65 years for both groups. The bivalirudin group had more grafts: 3.0 +/- 1 versus 2.5 +/- 1. Procedural success rates at 30 days were identical in bivalirudin- and heparin-treated patients (93%). Operative times, total blood loss, reoperations for bleeding, and major adverse events were not significantly different. Strokes were more frequent in the heparin group: 5.5% versus 0; P = .05. Mortality was 2% in each group. Repeat revascularization was required in 3% of bivalirudin- and 2% of the heparin-treated patients.


For patients undergoing off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting, bivalirudin was an effective anticoagulant, without excessive bleeding and with a safety profile similar to that of heparin. Further trials are warranted to assess whether anticoagulation with bivalirudin improves clinical outcomes.

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