Antithrombotic therapy constitutes the basis of the management of acute coronary syndromes. It combines antiplatelet and anticoagulant therapy. Antiplatelet agents should combine aspirin and agents acting through the ADP pathway such as clopidogrel; newer antiplatelet agents such as prasugrel or ticagrelor have superior anti-ischemic efficacy, compared with clopidogrel. Intravenous glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors may be used in selected patients at high risk undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions. Unfractionated heparin constitutes the reference anticoagulant treatment. Enoxaparin provides slightly better anti-ischemic efficacy. Newer agents, such as bivalirudin or fondaparinux, reduce bleeding complications, with no improvement in anti-ischemic efficacy. The combination of antiplatelet and anticoagulant agents should be chosen according to the patients' characteristics and the management strategy of the acute coronary syndrome.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Pharmacology (medical)