The current American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) guidelines recommend dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) with aspirin and clopidogrel for 6 months followed by lifelong aspirin after transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). However, studies that have DAPT with aspirin following TAVR have questioned this recommendation as DAPT has been associated with more bleeding events compared to aspirin. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of all the RCTs comparing DAPT (aspirin plus clopidogrel) with aspirin alone as antithrombotic treatment following transcatheter aortic valve replacement.
The databases of Embase, PubMed, and Cochrane library were searched from inception to Oct 1, 2020, and randomized controlled trials (RCTs) reporting aspirin plus clopidogrel with aspirin alone as antithrombotic treatment after TAVI were included. Revman 5.3 was used to conduct the analysis.
After screening 152 articles, four studies involving 1086 patients (541 patients in the aspirin group and 545 patients in the DAPT group) were included. The results demonstrated that, at 30 days follow-up, compared with DAPT, aspirin was not associated with a statistically significant difference in the rate of bleeding events (RR = 1.22, 95% CI 0.62 to 2.39, P = 0.57), all-cause mortality (RR = 1.21, 95% CI 0.52 to 2.84, P = 0.66), stroke (RR = 0.81, 95% CI 0.24 to 2.79, P = 0.74), and MI (RR = 4.00, 95% CI 0.45 to 35.22, P = 0.21). However, at the 6 to 12 months follow-up, DAPT appeared to increase the risk of bleeding events compared with aspirin alone (RR = 1.67, 95% CI 1.24 to 2.24, P < 0.001), and there was no significant difference in the rate of all-cause mortality (RR = 0.89, 95% CI 0.53 to 1.48, P = 0.65), stroke (RR = 1.04, 95% CI 0.57 to 1.92, P = 0.90), and MI (RR = 1.65, 95% CI 0.52 to 5.26, P = 0.40) among the two groups.
Our systematic review and meta-analysis suggested that aspirin alone could decrease the risk of bleeding and was not associated with higher risk of mortality, stroke or myocardial infarction compared with DAPT.