Objectives: The authors analyzed contemporary use of glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa inhibitors in patients with non-ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndrome (NSTE ACS) to determine patient selection patterns with early (<24 hours) GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor use and the relationship between GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor therapy and use of other guidelines-recommended therapies for NSTE ACS. Methods: Using the CRUSADE Quality Improvement Initiative database, patient characteristics, in-hospital treatments, and outcomes for 65,424 patients with ischemic chest pain of <24 hours' duration and either positive cardiac markers or ischemic electrocardiographic changes were analyzed. Data were collected from 443 U.S. hospitals from January 2001 to June 2003. Results: Only 35% of eligible patients received GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors <24 hours after hospital admission. Approximately one third of patients received GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors in the emergency department, one third in the coronary care unit, and one third in the catheterization laboratory. Admission to a cardiologist's care was the most significant associated factor with early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor use, along with elevated cardiac markers or ST-segment deviation. Patients at high risk for adverse cardiac events due to advanced age, congestive heart failure, or female gender were less likely to receive early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor therapy. Patients who received early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor therapy were more likely to receive other guidelines-recommended therapies. Conclusions: Despite the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) guidelines recommendations, early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor therapy remains underutilized in patients with NSTE ACS and administration of early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitors is directed toward lower-risk patients. Early GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor therapy is associated with improved overall adherence to the ACC/AHA guidelines.
- Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors
- Guidelines-recommended therapies
- Non-ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndrome
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine