A number of trials have assessed the efficacy and safety of short-term dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) in patients who undergo percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). However, whether to continue aspirin or a PY inhibitor after a short course of DAPT is actively debated.
PUBMED and EMBASE were searched through March 2020 for randomized controlled trials evaluating short-term DAPT (≤6 months) when compared with longer-term (≥12 months) DAPT among patients undergoing PCI. The ischemic outcomes were all-cause death, myocardial infarction, stent thrombosis, and stroke. The safety outcome was major and/or clinically relevant bleeding. The primary objective was to investigate the outcomes with aspirin monotherapy (Aspirin group) versus PY inhibitor monotherapy (P2Y12i group) after short-term DAPT.
Our search identified 17 eligible trials enrolling a total of 54,625 patients comparing different DAPT duration. Either of the 2 monotherapy groups did not increase the risk of ischemic outcomes when compared with the long-term DAPT group, without difference between the Aspirin versus the P2Y12i groups. However, both monotherapy groups significantly reduced bleeding when compared with long-term DAPT (Aspirin group: hazard ratio [95% CI]: 0.62 [0.45-0.86], P=.004 and P2Y12i group: 0.68 [0.50-0.93], P=.015). There was no difference in bleeding between the Aspirin versus P2Y12i groups (hazard ratio=0.91 [0.58-1.43], P=.70).
Among patients undergoing PCI, short-term DAPT with continuation of either aspirin or P2Y12i reduced bleeding without increasing ischemic outcomes when compared with long-term DAPT. The choice of antiplatelet therapy after short-term DAPT should be evaluated in well-powered trials.

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