Perioperative management and monitoring of antiplatelet agents: A focused review on aspirin and P2Y12 inhibitors

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Korean Journal of Anesthesiology








Antiplatelet therapy; Aspirin; Bleeding; P2Y inhibitor 12; Platelet; Transfusion


Platelets play pivotal roles in hemostasis as well as pathological arterial thrombosis. The combination of aspirin and a P2Y12 inhibitor has become the mainstay therapy in the ageing population with cardiovascular conditions, particularly during and after percutaneous coronary intervention. A number of novel P2Y12 inhibitors has become available in the recent years, and they markedly vary in pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties. Perioperative physicians today face a challenge of preventing hemorrhage due to platelet inhibitors, while minimizing thrombotic risks. There are several point-of-care platelet function tests available in the peri-procedural assessment of residual platelet aggregation. However, these platelet function tests are not standardized in terms of sample processing, agonist type and potency as well as methods of detecting platelet activity. Understanding the differences in pharmacological properties of antiplatelet agents, principles of platelet function tests, and pertinent hemostatic strategies may be useful to anesthesiologists and intensivists who manage perioperative issues associated with antiplatelet agents. The objectives of this review are: 1) to discuss clinical data on aspirin and P2Y12 inhibitors relating to perioperative bleeding, 2) to outline different features of point-of-care platelet function tests, and 3) to discuss therapeutic options for the prevention and treatment of bleeding associated with antiplatelet agents.