Treatment with tirofiban for acute coronary syndrome (ACS): a systematic review and network analysis

S.H. Lang*, Nathan Manning, N. Armstrong, K. Misso, A. Allen, M. di Nisio, J. Kleijnen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective: To assess the efficacy of tirofiban in comparison to usual care or other GPIIb/IIIa antagonists (eptifibatide and abciximab). Results were analysed by drug administration with planned percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) or as medical management without planned PCI, and separately for STEMI or NSTE ACS patients. Research design and methods: A systematic review was performed of randomized controlled trials of tirofiban, abciximab, eptifibatide or usual care given to patients with acute coronary syndrome. Nine databases were searched up to March 2010. Pair-wise meta-analysis was used to combine all available direct comparisons; indirect comparisons and network analysis were performed when this was not possible. The primary outcome was MACE (major adverse cardiac event). Results: The search yielded 8, 119 records and 50 trials were included (total number of patients 52,958). Compared to usual care, high and medium-dose tirofiban (25 and 10 mu g/kg/min) administered with planned PCI reduced MACE at 30 days for patients with STEMI (RR 0.67, 95% CI 0.45, 0.99; RR 0.28, 95% CI 0.10, 0.80), but was not effective as a medical management. Medium-dose tirofiban (10 mu g/kg/min) administered with planned PCI or low dose (0.4 mu g/kg/min) as medical management reduced the risk of MACE for patients with NSTE ACS (RR 0.39, 95% CI 0.21, 0.75; RR 0.58, 95% CI 0.41, 0.83) in comparison to usual care, but at the expense of increased thrombocytopenia (RR 3.26, 95% CI 1.31, 8.13). Evidence from RCTs and network analysis indicated tirofiban and abciximab were equally effective and safe. Comparing tirofiban and eptifibatide treatment by indirect and network analysis produced inconclusive results. Conclusions: Tirofiban was more effective than usual care for STEMI and NSTE ACS patients receiving planned PCI, and NSTE ACS patients receiving medical management. Tirofiban and abciximab were equally effective. Comparisons of tirofiban and eptifibatide were inconclusive.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)351-370
JournalCurrent Medical Research and Opinion
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012


  • Acute coronary syndrome
  • Aggrastat
  • Systematic review
  • Tirofiban

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