Tranexamic Acid After Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage: Post-Hoc Analysis of the ULTRA Trial

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Abstract

Background and objectives: The ULTRA-trial showed that ultra-early and short-term tranexamic acid treatment after subarachnoid hemorrhage did not improve clinical outcome at six months. An expected proportion of the included patients had non-aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage In this post-hoc study, we will investigate whether ultra-early and short-term tranexamic acid treatment in patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage improves clinical outcome at six months.

Methods: The ULTRA-trial is a multicenter, prospective, randomized, controlled, open-label trial with blinded outcome assessment, conducted between July 24, 2013 and January 20, 2020. After confirmation of subarachnoid hemorrhage on non-contrast computer tomography, patients were allocated to either ultra-early and short-term tranexamic acid treatment with usual care, or usual care only. In this post-hoc analysis, we included all ULTRA-participants with a confirmed aneurysm on CT angiography and/or digital subtraction angiography. The primary endpoint was clinical outcome at six months, assessed by the modified Rankin Scale, dichotomized into good (0-3) and poor (4-6) outcome.

Results: Of the 813 ULTRA-trial patients who had an aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage, 409 (50%) were assigned to the tranexamic acid group and 404 (50%) to the control group. In the intention-to-treat analysis, 233 of 405 (58%) patients in the tranexamic acid group and 238 of 399 (60%) patients in the control group had a good clinical outcome (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 0·92; 95% confidence interval (C.I.) 0·69 to 1·24). None of the secondary outcomes showed significant differences between the treatment groups: excellent clinical outcome (mRS 0-2) aOR 0.76, 95% C.I. 0.57-1.03, all-cause mortality at 30 days aOR 0.91, 95% C.I. 0.65-1.28), all-cause mortality at six months aOR 1.10 (95% C.I. 0.80-1.52).

Discussion: Ultra-early and short-term tranexamic acid treatment did not improve clinical outcome at six months in patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage and therefore, cannot be recommended.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02684812; submission date February 18, 2016, first patient enrollment on July 24th, 2013).

Classification of evidence: This study provides Class II evidence that tranexamic acid does not improve outcomes in patients presenting with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNeurology
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2022

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