BACKGROUND: A limited number of studies have examined the age and sex differences, and potentially changing trends, in cardiac medication and procedure use in patients hospitalized with an acute coronary syndrome (ACS).
METHODS: Using data from a large multinational study, we examined the age and sex differences, and changing trends (1999-2007) therein, in the hospital use of evidence-based therapies in patients hospitalized with an ACS using data from the Global Registry of Acute Coronary Events (n=50 096).
RESULTS: After adjustment for several variables, in comparison with men below 65 years, patients in other age-sex strata had a significantly lower odds of receiving aspirin [odds ratios (ORs) for men 65-74, 75-84, and >/=85 years, women <65, 65-74, 75-84, and >/=85 years were 0.86, 0.84, 0.72, 0.80, 0.86, 0.68 and 0.46, respectively], angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers (ORs, 1.08, 1.01, 0,71, 0.83, 0.90, 0.89, and 0.63), beta blockers (ORs, 0.66, 0.52, 0.53, 0.67, 0.54, 0.53, and 0.52), statins (ORs, 0.72, 0.49, 0.29, 0.82, 0.68, 0.44, and 0.22), and undergoing coronary artery bypass graft surgery or a percutaneous coronary intervention (ORs, 0.79, 0.53, 0.21, 0.64, 0.57, 0.38, and 0.13) during their acute hospitalization. Age and sex differences in the receipt of these therapies remained relatively unchanged during the period under study.
CONCLUSION: Although there were increasing trends in the use of evidence-based medications and cardiac procedures over time, important gaps in the utilization of effective cardiac treatment modalities persist in elderly patients and younger women.
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