Bivalirudin versus unfractionated heparin during peripheral vascular interventions: a propensity-matched study


Aurora Cardiovascular Services, Aurora Sinai/Aurora St. Luke's Medical Centers

Center for Integrative Research on Cardiovascular Aging, Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center


OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to compare the association of access site complications and the use of unfractionated heparin versus bivalirudin during subinguinal peripheral vascular intervention.

BACKGROUND: Compared to unfractionated heparin, bivalirudin has been associated with fewer bleeding complications in patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention but more ischemic events. The safety and efficacy of direct thrombin inhibitors in peripheral vascular interventions is not well defined.

METHODS: We compared the incidence of in-hospital access site complications and discharge status among patients in the multicenter, prospective Vascular Quality Initiative registry who underwent peripheral vascular intervention between August 2007 and January 2014 using bivalirudin or unfractionated heparin. Propensity score matching was used to obtain a balanced cohort of 1,524 patients in each treatment group.

RESULTS: Patients treated with bivalirudin had a significantly lower incidence of access site hematomas (2.4% vs. 3.9%, P = 0.018), shorter post-procedural hospitalization (1.0 vs. 1.2 days, P < 0.001) and lower rates of discharge to a nursing home or rehabilitation center rather than home (7.61% vs. 9.73%, P = 0.034) when compared with unfractionated heparin-treated patients. The incidence of in-hospital access site occlusion, distal embolization, and mortality did not differ significantly between groups.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients who received bivalirudin had lower rates of access site hematoma, shorter length of stay, and improved discharge status compared with unfractionated heparin during hospitalization for peripheral vascular intervention. Randomized comparisons of these agents are needed to confirm these findings. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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