Background: The optimal antiplatelet strategy in the second year after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) remains unclear.
Aims: We aimed to compare ticagrelor monotherapy with aspirin monotherapy on clinical outcomes beyond 1 year post-PCI.
Methods: This post hoc subanalysis of the open-label, all-comers, randomised GLOBAL LEADERS trial, which compared 23-month ticagrelor monotherapy following 1-month dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT), with 12-month aspirin monotherapy following 12-month DAPT, only included patients who, at 12 months, were free from ischaemic and bleeding events, and adherent to their assigned antiplatelet therapy. The incidences of ischaemic events (all-cause death, any myocardial infarction, or any stroke) and bleeding events (Bleeding Academic Research Consortium [BARC] type 3 or 5 bleeding) during the second year (12-24 months) were compared between patients receiving either ticagrelor or aspirin monotherapy.
Results: The present analysis included 11,121 (ticagrelor monotherapy n=5,308, and aspirin monotherapy n=5,813) of the 15,991 patients enrolled in GLOBAL LEADERS. During the second year, the ischaemic composite endpoint was lower with ticagrelor monotherapy compared to aspirin monotherapy (1.9% vs 2.6%: log-rank p=0.014, adjusted hazard ratio [HR] 0.74, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.58-0.96; p=0.022), which was primarily driven by a reduced risk of myocardial infarction. In contrast, BARC type 3 or 5 bleeding was numerically higher with ticagrelor monotherapy (0.5% vs 0.3%: log-rank p=0.051, adjusted HR 1.89, 95% CI: 1.03-3.45; p=0.005).
Conclusions: Patients free from events at the end of the first year post-PCI and who adhered to their prescribed regimen had a reduced risk of ischaemic events compared to aspirin monotherapy in the second year post-PCI. ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT01813435
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