When patients are using carbasalate calcium or acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), it is recommended to prescribe a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) in order to prevent gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding. Should this recommendation also be followed for patients who are using clopidogrel in monotherapy, which is increasingly the case in practice?
In a systematic literature review of the occurrence of GI bleeding when using clopidogrel versus ASA, we included 9 studies that compared the risk of GI bleeding when using ASA with clopidogrel monotherapy.
These 9 studies on clopidogrel and ASA show that the risk of GI bleeding is also elevated when using clopidogrel monotherapy and that it is comparable with the risk of GI bleeding when using ASA.
Based on the current literature, we recommend prescribing pantoprazole to patients who are using clopidogrel monotherapy and have additional risk factors for GI bleeding, in accordance with the procedure for low-dose ASA. The risk of GI bleeding must be weighed against the disadvantages of using PPIs.
Conflict of interest and financial support: none declared.