Comparison of Safety and Efficacy of Bivalirudin Versus Unfractionated Heparin in Percutaneous Peripheral Intervention. A Single-Center Experience

Imran R. Sheikh, S. Hinan Ahmed, Naoyo Mori, Anjan Gupta, Mark Mewissen, Suhail Allaqaband, Tanvir Bajwa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the efficacy and safety of bivalirudin versus low-dose unfractionated heparin (UFH) in percutaneous peripheral intervention (PPI). Background: Anticoagulation strategies used in PPI are based primarily on studies of percutaneous coronary intervention where higher doses of heparin are used usually in combination with a glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor. There are no studies comparing bivalirudin alone versus low-dose heparin in PPI. Methods: Consecutive patients who underwent PPI at our institution were treated with either bivalirudin or low-dose UFH. Patients were assessed prospectively during index hospital stay for procedural success and bleeding complications. Of 236 patients, 111 were dosed with UFH at 50 U/kg (goal activated clotting time of 180 to 240 s), and 125 were dosed with bivalirudin at 0.75-mg/kg/h bolus followed by a 1.75-mg/kg infusion. Procedural success was defined as <20% post-procedure residual stenosis with no flow-limiting dissections or intravascular thrombus formation and major bleeding as intracranial or retroperitoneal hemorrhage or a fall in hemoglobin ≥5 g/dl. Anticoagulation cost analysis was conducted. Results: Procedural success and major bleeding rates were similar with bivalirudin versus heparin (98% vs. 99% and 2.4% vs. 0.9%, respectively). There were no differences in minor bleeding, time to ambulation, and length of hospital stay. The hospital cost for bivalirudin was $547 and <$1.22 for heparin (10,000 U). Two activated clotting time levels cost $4.00. Conclusions: Low-dose UFH is as effective and safe as bivalirudin when used as an anticoagulation strategy in patients undergoing PPI, and low-dose UFH is less costly than bivalirudin. Larger randomized studies are required to further evaluate these findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)871-876
Number of pages6
JournalJACC: Cardiovascular Interventions
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • bivalirudin
  • heparin
  • percutaneous peripheral intervention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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