The study sought to evaluate whether prophylactic ipsilateral ulnar artery compression during radial artery hemostasis could reduce the risk of radial artery occlusion (RAO).
RAO after transradial access (TRA) is a structural complication of TRA. It limits future ipsilateral TRA and may cause transient pain. Maintaining radial artery flow during hemostasis reduces the incidence of acute RAO. Ipsilateral ulnar compression increases radial artery flow and could impact the incidence of RAO.
Three thousand patients undergoing diagnostic cardiac catheterization using TRA were randomized to receive either standard patent hemostasis protocol (Group I) or prophylactic ipsilateral ulnar compression in addition to patent hemostasis (Group II). Using plethysmography, radial artery patency was evaluated at the time of removal of the compression device as well as 24 h and 30 days after the procedure. The primary study endpoint was 30-day RAO.
The primary endpoint, 30-day RAO, was significantly reduced in patients with patent hemostasis and prophylactic ulnar compression compared with standard patent hemostasis (0.9% vs. 3.0%; p = 0.0001). Baseline patient and procedural characteristics were similar between the 2 groups. RAO was significantly reduced by prophylactic ulnar compression at all time intervals (p < 0.0001).
Prophylactic ipsilateral ulnar compression during radial artery hemostasis is an effective, simple, and inexpensive technique that lowers the risk of RAO after TRA.