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Antiplatelet drugs in elective ENT surgery

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 July 2012

J R Savage*
ENT Department, University of Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
A Parmar
Otolaryngology Department, Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Gloucester, UK
P J Robinson
Otolaryngology Department, Southmead and Bristol Royal Children's Hospitals, Bristol, UK
Address for correspondence: Dr Julian Savage, Service d'ORL, CHUS – Hôtel-Dieu, 580 Rue Bowen Sud, Sherbrooke, Quebec J1G 2E8, Canada Fax: +1 819 564 5449 E-mail:



Oral antiplatelet drugs are increasingly being encountered in patients scheduled for elective ENT surgery. Their pre-operative cessation can have potentially serious complications in some patients, particularly those with intracoronary stents.


In order to gain an impression of current peri-operative management of patients taking antiplatelet drugs, an online survey was distributed to the Expert Panel of ENT UK, the British Association of Otolaryngologists Head and Neck Surgeons, between 13 January and 15 February 2011.


Three hundred and three members were contacted. The response rate was 55 per cent (167 replies); 78 per cent of respondents were consultants. Results are presented in the main text.

Conclusion and recommendations:

Patients can be categorised as high or low risk, depending on their indication for taking antiplatelet drugs. Recommendations taken from the literature are given on how best to manage these two groups.

Main Articles
Copyright © JLO (1984) Limited 2012

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