Background and objective: Drainage of the pleural space is a common procedure. The safety of chest tube insertion in patients using clopidogrel has not been investigated.
Methods: Ultrasound-guided chest tube insertions performed on 24 patients who were being actively treated with clopidogrel were retrospectively reviewed.
Results: No excessive bleeding occurred in any of these patients.
Conclusions: Given the known effects of clopidogrel on platelet function, these results were interpreted as indicating that clopidogrel therapy is a relative but not an absolute contraindication to chest tube insertion, if an experienced operator places a small-bore tube under ultrasound guidance.