Assessing bleeding in acute coronary syndrome using the Bleeding Academic Research Consortium definition

Federico Fortuni, Gabriele Crimi, Nuccia Morici, Giuseppe De Luca, Luca Paolo Alberti, Stefano Savonitto, Stefano De Servi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: The Bleeding Academic Research Consortium (BARC) definition was proposed to overcome the heterogeneity among the many bleeding definitions. The aim of this study-level meta-analysis was to explore the incidence of BARC-assessed bleeding in acute coronary syndrome (ACS) studies and to ascertain the relation between these events and variables related to bleeding risk. METHODS AND RESULTS: We searched the literature for studies that reported bleeding events according to BARC criteria in ACS patients. An analysis on heterogeneity between studies in bleeding reports was performed with I test. A meta-regression was conducted to explore the relation between different types of BARC bleedings and patient and procedural features. Nine studies were included in the analysis. Overall, BARC 2 rates were higher than BARC 3 or 5 rates (6.3 versus 2.6%). An extremely high level of heterogeneity was detected both for BARC 2 (I 99.3%) and BARC 3 or 5 (I 97.5%) bleedings. Increasing age [β coefficient 0.4% (0.2-0.6%); P < 0.001] and renal impairment [β coefficient 1 6.5% (1-32.1%); P = 0.037] were associated with increased BARC 3 or 5 rates, whereas the use of glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors was the only factor related to an increased incidence of BARC 2 bleeding [β coefficient 2 2.3% (5.5-39%); P = 0.009]. CONCLUSION: The high level of heterogeneity in BARC bleeding reports only partially explained by bleeding risk profile suggests that a regulatory guidance to properly evaluate bleedings and to estimate the risk--benefit in clinical trials investigating different antithrombotic treatments in ACS patients is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)818-824
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of cardiovascular medicine (Hagerstown, Md.)
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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