What Is Ticagrelor Used For?

As a prescription antiplatelet drug, ticagrelor is used to prevent problems such as strokes and heart attacks in people with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). It is also used to prevent clots from forming in the stent after an angioplasty. This medication is intended to be taken with aspirin; the two drugs work together to prevent platelets from sticking together.

An Introduction to the Uses of Ticagrelor

Ticagrelor (Brilinta™) is a prescription antiplatelet medication that is used to prevent heart attacks, strokes, and cardiovascular-related deaths in people who have acute coronary syndrome (ACS). In people with ACS who are treated with angioplasty, ticagrelor also helps to prevent the stent from forming clots.
 

Using Ticagrelor for Acute Coronary Syndrome

Acute coronary syndrome is a term used to describe certain types of heart diseases, including unstable angina and certain types of heart attacks. For people with a history of acute coronary syndrome, ticagrelor (when taken in combination with aspirin) has been shown to decrease the risk for a heart attack, stroke, and heart-related death.
 
Ticagrelor should not be started in individuals who will be having a coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. For people already taking ticagrelor, it is best to stop it five days before a CABG surgery, if possible (this is not always possible).
 

Using Ticagrelor After an Angioplasty

Angioplasty is also known as percutaneous intervention (PCI). Angioplasty involves threading a small tube known as a catheter through a large blood vessel (often in the upper thigh) all the way to the heart. Once the tube reaches the blocked artery in the heart, a small balloon is inflated to open up the blockage. When used for treating a blocked heart artery, angioplasty usually involves placing a stent (a small mesh tube) to help keep the artery open.
 
Angioplasty does not change the underlying risk factors that led to the blocked artery, such as high cholesterol, and the stent itself (as well as other heart arteries) may become blocked in the future. Ticagrelor, when taken with aspirin, is prescribed to help prevent problems such as heart attacks or strokes due to future clots, as well as to keep clots from forming in the stent.
 
It is important to take ticagrelor and aspirin as long as your healthcare provider thinks it is necessary. Depending on your particular situation, this may be for a longer or shorter period compared to others. Other measures to reduce your risk factors should also be taken, such as lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol.
 
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Ticagrelor Drug Information

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