Clopidogrel Bisulfate, also known as the brand name anticoagulant medication Plavix, continues to impress with its safety profile. A study released at the end of March 2013 revealed that patients set to undergo percutaneous coronary intervention could successfully continue their regimen of Clopidogrel during this time. Caution was extended from the study investigators, which took place in Belgium and the Netherlands, stressing that aspirin should not be continued with this treatment plan. The study set out to determine if the use of Clopidogrel either with or without aspirin was safe and tolerable for patients expecting to have a percutaneous coronary intervention. This trial was an open-label, controlled and randomized study that involved 573 patients. During a one year period of time 279 patients were administered Clopidogrel and 284 patients were given Clopidogrel and aspirin therapy. Unusual bleeding episodes were recorded in approximately 54 of the patients who received treatment with Clopidogrel only. In the group of participants that were administered Clopidogrel and an aspirin regimen there were 126 patients who experienced adverse bleeding episodes. The need for blood transfusions was low for the Clopidogrel only group, with 11 patients needing this life saving intervention. Of the participants in the group who were dosed with aspirin and Clopidogrel there were 27 patients who ended up needing a blood transfusion.
The bottom line of this study revealed that the use of Clopidogrel without aspirin was safe, tolerable, and showed a sizable reduction in complications from bleeding. Positive news was also gleaned from the study regarding thrombotic events, as the use of Clopidogrel without aspirin did not augment the instance of additional thrombotic events. The patent for Plavix, the brand of Clopidogrel, expires on June 10, 2019.
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