Patients who undergo transcatheter aortic valve implantation are generally discharged on dual-antiplatelet therapy. However, many of these patients also have indications for anticoagulant therapy, and it is unclear what the best antithrombotic strategy is in these cases. Data from 360 patients who underwent transcatheter aortic valve implantation were retrospectively analyzed, of whom 60 (16.7%) had indications for anticoagulant treatment, mainly because of atrial fibrillation. The antithrombotic regimen was decided according to clinical evaluation of thrombotic and hemorrhagic risk; most of these patients (n = 43) were discharged with warfarin plus a single antiplatelet drug. Their outcomes were compared to those in a group with no indications for anticoagulation (n = 300) treated with dual-antiplatelet therapy. During the follow-up period (median 11 months), 53 patients (15%) died; mortality was not associated with antithrombotic regimen. The incidence of cerebral events or intracranial hemorrhage (4.6% and 1.1%, respectively) was low in the study population, and no significant differences were detected between groups; the bleeding rate was also unaffected by antithrombotic therapy. In conclusion, when anticoagulation is indicated after transcatheter aortic valve implantation, many variables must be taken into account. The most frequent scenario in this study was patients in atrial fibrillation, most of whom were discharged with warfarin plus a single antiplatelet medication. When bleeding was a concern, especially in the absence of coronary disease, warfarin alone was prescribed. These results suggest that this approach is safe, but data from larger, randomized studies are needed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine