Curr Opin Cardiol. 2023 Aug 18. doi: 10.1097/HCO.0000000000001085. Online ahead of print.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Anemia is prevalent in patients with acute coronary syndromes. In this setting, there is uncertainty and controversy surrounding the optimal transfusion strategy for managing anemia. The goal of this review is to summarize the current clinical evidence, guidelines, and future directions for managing transfusion in acute coronary syndromes.
RECENT FINDINGS: There is limited evidence from randomized trials evaluating restrictive versus liberal transfusion in patients hospitalized with and/or for acute coronary syndromes. The results from these studies suggest clinical equipoise between transfusion strategies for short term outcomes, and a trend toward favoring a liberal strategy for long term major adverse cardiac events. There is inconsistency across clinical practice guidelines with respect to the optimal strategy for managing anemia and transfusion in acute coronary syndromes due to insufficient evidence.
SUMMARY: More evidence is urgently needed to conclusively establish the optimal strategy for transfusion management in the setting of acute coronary syndromes. These data will directly inform harmonization of clinical practice guidelines. Future investigations should explore alternative strategies to hemoglobin for quantifying the degree of anemic stress for personalizing transfusion therapy, the effects on functional outcomes, and managing anemia following hospital discharge.