While the assessment of analytical precision within medical laboratories has received much attention in scientific enquiry, the degree of as well as the sources causing variation between them remains incompletely understood. In this study, we quantified the variance components when performing coagulation tests with identical analytical platforms in different laboratories and computed intraclass correlations coefficients (ICC) for each coagulation test.
Data from eight laboratories measuring fibrinogen twice in twenty healthy subjects with one out of 3 different platforms and single measurements of prothrombin time (PT), and coagulation factors II, V, VII, VIII, IX, X, XI and XIII were analysed. By platform, the variance components of (i) the subjects, (ii) the laboratory and the technician and (iii) the total variance were obtained for fibrinogen as well as (i) and (iii) for the remaining factors using ANOVA.
The variability for fibrinogen measurements within a laboratory ranged from 0.02 to 0.04, the variability between laboratories ranged from 0.006 to 0.097. The ICC for fibrinogen ranged from 0.37 to 0.66 and from 0.19 to 0.80 for PT between the platforms. For the remaining factors the ICC’s ranged from 0.04 (FII) to 0.93 (FVIII).
Variance components that could be attributed to technicians or laboratory procedures were substantial, led to disappointingly low intraclass correlation coefficients for several factors and were pronounced for some of the platforms. Our findings call for sustained efforts to raise the level of standardization of structures and procedures involved in the quantification of coagulation factors.
Inter-rater variability; Intraclass correlation coefficient; Reproducibility of testing; Test validity
Early treatment of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) can be associated with improved patient outcomes. The Japanese Ministry of Health and Welfare (JMHW) and the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) criteria are the most specific for diagnosis of septic DIC. The revised Japanese Association for Acute Medicine (JAAM) criteria are able to diagnose sepsis-induced DIC in the early stage. Recombinant human soluble thrombomodulin (rhTM) has recently been used for treating DIC. Previous studies have shown a benefit of using rhTM for D,IC diagnosed by the JMHW or ISTH criteria, but not the JAAM criteria. The purpose of this study was to sequentially evaluate coagulation biomarkers and the DIC score after giving rhTM treatment to patients with sepsis-induced DIC diagnosed according to the JAAM criteria.
We performed a retrospective cohort study. Critically ill patients were included if diagnosed with sepsis-induced DIC according to the JAAM criteria. They were either treated without rhTM (control group) or with rhTM (treatment group). The primary outcome was the DIC score on day 7. The secondary outcome was 28-day mortality from the start of DIC treatment. Changes in the results of coagulation tests were assessed over time from the start of treatment to day 7.
Twelve and 23 patients were assigned to the treatment and control groups, respectively. The DIC score on day 7 was significantly higher in the treatment group (3.3 ± 1.4) than in the control group (4.9 ± 1.8, p < 0.05). Estimated survival showed lower in treatment group than control group. There was significant difference between the control group and the treatment group (p < 0.05). The D-dimer level on day 7 was significantly lower in the treatment group (7.5 ± 4.1 μg/mL) than in the control group (30.9 ± 33.6 μg/mL, p < 0.05). Life-threatening bleeding did not occur. Our results indicated that rhTM improved sepsis-induced DIC and mortality.
Recombinant human soluble thrombomodulin may improve sepsis-induced DIC diagnosed according to the JAAM criteria without an increased bleeding risk.
Disseminated intravascular coagulation; Sepsis; Thrombomodulin; Intensive care unit; Critically ill patient; Anticoagulant; Multiple organ failure; DIC score; JAAM
The aim of the present study was to compare circulating levels of selected prothrombotic markers in patients suffering acute myocardial infarction (AMI) with and without left ventricular (LV) thrombus.
One hundred patients with AMI treated with PCI on the LAD and dual antiplatelet therapy were included. LV thrombus formation was detected by echocardiography and/or MRI in 15 patients. Fasting blood samples were drawn 4–5 days (baseline), 6–7 days, 8–9 days, 2–3 weeks and 3 months after the AMI for determination of haemostatic markers.
We found higher levels of soluble tissue factor (TF) and D-dimer in the LV thrombus group 4–5 days, 8–9 days and 3 months (only TF) after the AMI compared to the patients without thrombus formation (p<0.05). Patients with TF in the upper quartile at baseline had significantly higher risk for LV thrombus (OR 4.2; 95% CI 1.2 -14.5; p=0.02, adjusted for infarct size).
The levels of prothrombin fragment 1+2 (F1+2) and endogenous thrombin potential (ETP) were significantly lower in the thrombus group after 8–9 days (only ETP), 2–3 weeks and 3 months. The levels of plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 activity and tissue plasminogen activator antigen did not differ between the groups.
In the acute phase of AMI, we found higher levels of TF and D-dimer in the LV thrombus group, indicating hypercoagulability of possible importance for the generation of mural thrombus. Lower levels of F1+2, ETP and D-dimer in the thrombus group late during follow-up are probably induced by the initiated anticoagulation therapy.
Acute myocardial infarction; Haemostatic markers; Inflammation; Left ventricular thrombus formation
Effective treatment of venous thromboembolism (VTE) strikes a balance between prevention of recurrence and bleeding complications. The current standard of care is heparin followed by a vitamin K antagonist such as warfarin. However, this option is not without its limitations, as the anticoagulant effect of warfarin is associated with high inter- and intra-patient variability and patients must be regularly monitored to ensure that anticoagulation is within the narrow target therapeutic range. Several novel oral anticoagulant agents are in the advanced stages of development for VTE treatment, some of which are given after an initial period of heparin treatment, in line with current practice, while others switch from high to low doses after the initial phase of treatment. In this review we assess the critical considerations for treating VTE in light of emerging clinical data for new oral agents and discuss the merits of novel treatment regimens for patients who have experienced an episode of deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism.
Venous thromboembolism; Anticoagulants; Vitamin K antagonists; Heparin; Recurrence; Bleeding
Low Frequency Vibro-Percussion (LFVP) assists clearance of thrombi in catheter systems and when applied to the heart and timed to diastole is known to enhance coronary flow. However LFVP on a clotted coronary like vessel given engagement over a chest wall sized barrier (to resemble non-invasive heart attack therapy) requires study.
One hour old clots (n=16) were dispensed within a flexible segment of Soft-Flo catheter (4 mm lumen), weighted, interfaced with Heparinized Saline (HS), secured atop a curved dampening base, and photographed. A ~4 cm meat slab was placed over the segment and randomized to receive intermittent LFVP (engaged, - disengaged at 1 second intervals), or no LFVP for 20 minutes. HS was pulsed (~120/80 mmHg), with the diastolic phase coordinated to match LFVP delivery. The segment was then re-photographed and aspirated of fluid to determine post clot weight. The trial was then repeated with 0.5 mls of Streptokinase (15,000 IU/100 microlitre) delivered ~ 2 cm upstream from the clot.
LFVP - HS only samples (vs. controls) showed; a) development of clot length fluid channels absent in the control group (p < 0.0002); b) enhanced dissolved clot mixing scores ( 5.0 vs. 0.8, p < 2.8 E – 6); and c) increased percent clot dissolution (23.0% vs. 1.8% respectively, p < 8.5 E-6). LFVP - SK samples had a similar comparative clot disruptive profile, however fluid channels developed faster and percent clot dissolution more than doubled (51.0% vs. 3.0%, p< 9.8 E- 6).
Diastolic timed LFVP (50 Hz) engaged across a chest wall sized barrier enhances clot disruptive effects to an underlying coronary like system.
Vibration; Thrombolysis; STEMI; Reperfusion; Diastole
Dual antiplatelet treatment with aspirin and clopidogrel is the antithrombotic treatment recommended after an acute coronary syndrome and/or coronary artery stenting. The evidence for optimal antiplatelet therapy for patients, in whom long-term treatment oral anticoagulation is mandatory, is however scarce. To evaluate the safety and efficacy of the various antithrombotic strategies adopted in this population, we reviewed the available evidence on the management of patients receiving oral anticoagulation, such as a vitamin-k-antagonists, referred for coronary artery stenting.
Atrial fibrillation is the most frequent indication for oral anticoagulation. The need of starting antiplatelet therapy in this clinical scenario raises concerns about the combination to choose: triple therapy with warfarin, aspirin, and a thienopyridine being the most frequent and advised. The safety of this regimen appeared suboptimal because of an increased risk in hemorrhagic complications. On the other hand, the combination of oral anticoagulation and an antiplatelet agent is suboptimal in preventing thromboembolic events and stent thrombosis; dual antiplatelet therapy may be considered only when a high hemorrhagic risk and low thromboembolic risk are perceived. Indeed, the need for prolonged multiple-drug antithrombotic therapy increases the bleeding risks when drug eluting stents are used.
Since current evidence derives mainly from small, single-center and retrospective studies, large-scale prospective multicenter studies are urgently needed.
Atrial fibrillation; Percutaneous coronary intervention; Stent; Warfarin; Antiplatelet drugs
Hump-nosed pit viper (Genus Hypnale) is a medically important venomous snake in Sri Lanka and Southwestern India which causes significant morbidity and mortality. Envenoming of this snake results in hemostastic dysfunction, thrombotic microangiopathy, acute kidney injury and death. This case describes an authenticated first case of ischemic stroke in a 65 year old male following envenoming by H.hypnale in Sri Lanka.
Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a leading cause of hospital-related deaths worldwide. However, the proportion of patients at risk of VTE who receive appropriate prophylaxis in Egypt is unknown. The ENDORSE study in Egypt is part of a global initiative to uncover the incidence of high-risk surgical and medical patients and determine what proportion of these patients receive appropriate VTE prophylaxis.
Ten Egyptian hospitals participated in this observational study, enrolling all surgical and medical patients that met the study criteria. This resulted in a cohort of 1,008 patients in acute care facilities who underwent a retrospective chart review. Each patient’s VTE risk status and the presence or absence of appropriate prophylactic care was assessed according to the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) guidelines 2004.
Of the 1,008 patients enrolled, 395 (39.2%) were found to be at high-risk for VTE. Overall, 227 surgical patients were at high-risk, although only 80 (35.2%) received ACCP-recommended prophylaxis. Similarly, 55/268 (32.75%) of high-risk medical patients received appropriate VTE prophylaxis. Low molecular weight heparin was the most commonly used anticoagulant, while mechanical prophylactic use was quite low (1.5%) in high-risk patients.
In Egypt, more than one-third of all patients hospitalized for surgery or acute medical conditions are at high risk for developing VTE. However, only a small fraction of these patients receive appropriate VTE prophylaxis. Corrective measures are necessary for preventing VTE morbidity and mortality in these high risk patients.
Venous thromboembolism; Egypt; Thromboprophylaxis; Risk factors
Postprandial hyperlipidemia and hyperglycemia have been related to cardiovascular events. Among different underlying mechanisms platelet activation seems to be responsible too. No comparable data between various tests in normo- vs. hyperlipidemics before and at different time intervals are available after a fat meal. We aimed to compare 9 of them within the same patients at several time points in postprandial hyperlipidemia.
For some tests baseline values between the groups were significantly different (TXB2, platelet sensitivity, sedimentation and WU-test). However, hyperlipidemia revealed a variable influence on the tests examined. Some of the available tests apparently sensitive to show platelet activation reflect the increase in triglycerides (TG), such as the sedimentation index. ADP-induced platelet aggregatory activity in count adjusted washed isolated platelet samples during postprandial hyperlipidemia indicates mildly enhanced platelet activity, but does not seem to induce significant changes in aggregation. In patients with severe hypertriglyceridemia (> 400 mg/dl fasting) changes in platelet function are more pronounced due to delayed decay and may last up to 16 hours paralleling TG reaching the prevalue. The overwhelming majority of platelet function tests do not significantly respond to postprandial hyperlipidemia. The correlation between the tests applied is poor. For standardization purpose, platelet aggregation tests, aimed to examine proaggregatory capacity in atherosclerosis, should only be performed at the same time of the day after a fasting period > 6 hours. The great variation in preanalytical work-up on comparison of various tests, large number of platelet tests available and their respective potential value are discussed.
At present, the suspicion that platelet function is significantly activated in the postprandial period cannot be supported by any of the tests used. The information provided is valuable to know for which test and group of patients a fasting period of which duration is recommendable.
Postprandial hyperlipidemia; Platelet activity; Platelet aggregation; Platelet count; Atherosclerosis
This is a commentary discussing the article published in Thrombosis Journal by Subramanian et al. [Thrombosis Journal 2012, 10:15].
Computer-assistance and self-monitoring lower the cost and may improve the quality of anticoagulation therapy. The main purpose of this clinical investigation was to use computer-assisted oral anticoagulant therapy to improve the time to reach and the time spent within the therapeutic target range compared to traditional oral anticoagulant therapy by physicians.
54 patients were randomized equally into 3 groups. Patients in two groups used CoaguChek® systems to measure international normalized ratio (INR) values and had dosages of anticoagulation treatment calculated in a computer system by an algorithm specific to each group. The third group received traditional anticoagulation treatment by physicians. The obtained INR values were compared regarding the time to reach, and the time spent within, the therapeutic target range, corresponding to INR values from 2 to 3.
Patients randomized to computer-assisted anticoagulation and the CoaguChek® system reached the therapeutic target range after 8 days compared to 14 days by prescriptions from physicians (p = 0.04). Time spent in the therapeutic target range did not differ between groups. The median INR value measured throughout the study from all patients by CoaguChek® at 2.5 (2.42–2.62) was lower than measured by a hospital-based Clinical and Biochemical Laboratory at 2.6 (2.45–2.76), (p = 0.02).
The therapeutic target range was reached faster by the use of computer-assisted anticoagulation treatment than prescribed by physicians, and the total time spent within the therapeutic target range was similar. Thus computer-assisted oral anticoagulant therapy may reduce the cost of anticoagulation therapy without lowering the quality. INR values measured by CoaguChek® were reliable compared to measurements by a clinical and biochemical laboratory.
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a major problem worldwide. Atherosclerosis and thrombosis underlying CAD involve multiple cell types. New and useful diagnostic markers are required. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of noncoding RNAs that posttranscriptionally regulate the gene expressions involved in various cellular processes. Endothelial dysfunction is implicated in early processes of athero-thrombosis. Thus, it was hypothesized that the level of vascular endothelium-enriched miRNAs would be altered in plasma samples of CAD patients.
Vascular endothelium-enriched miRNA (miR-126) level was analyzed in plasma from 31 patients with CAD and 36 patients without CAD (qRT-PCR analysis).
MiR-126 was not significantly down-regulated or up-regulated in CAD patients. Interestingly, the level of miR-126 was significantly decreased in patients with CAD and high low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol level. In contrast, the level of miR-126 was significantly increased when LDL cholesterol was high in patients who had risk factors for CAD but did not have angiographically significant CAD.
MiR-126 was not significantly down-regulated or up-regulated in CAD patients and was not suitable for discriminating CAD patients from patients without CAD. The oppositely-directed relationship between miR-126 and LDL cholesterol in patients with or without CAD may have significant implications for identifying a potential role of miR-126 in cholesterol metabolism.
Coronary artery disease; Circulating microRNA; LDL cholesterol
Bleeding remains a potentially lethal complication of cardio-pulmonary bypass (CPB) surgery. The purpose of this study was to obtain a better insight into in vitro thrombin generation in the context of CPB.
We used Calibrated Automated Thrombography to assess blood coagulation of 10 low-risk patients operated for valve replacement with CPB, under 2 experimental conditions, one implicating platelets as platelet dysfunction has been described to occur during CPB.
Our main finding was that CPB-induced coagulopathy was differently appreciated depending on the presence or absence of platelets: the decrease in thrombin generation was much less pronounced in their presence (mean endogenous thrombin potential change values before and after CPB were -3.9% in the presence of platelets and -39.6% in their absence).
Our results show that experimental conditions have a profound effect in the study of in vitro thrombin generation in the context of CPB.
Cardio pulmonary bypass; Thrombin; Platelets; Thrombography
Venous Thrombo-embolic disease is currently a hot topic especially in the UK. 25,000 patients per year die of Pulmonary Emboli (PE) in the United Kingdom (UK). Hip and knee arthroplasty surgery is associated with an increased rate of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolus (PE). The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines introduced in January 2010 recommended use of subcutaneous heparin or an oral anticoagulant (Dabigatran or Rivaroxiban) for 10-14 days post knee and 28-35 days post hip arthroplasty. In our unit we were keen on the advantages of an oral anticoagulant post arthroplasty in terms of patient compliance, and avoiding the need for self administered injection in the community.
We analysed all the notes, blood results and imaging of patients undergoing total hip or knee arthroplasty and present 1 year’s data using a regime of subcutaneous Dalteparin whilst an inpatient, followed by discharge on oral Dabigatran at a low dose (150 mg once daily).
There were 337 patients over 1 year with hip and knee arthroplasty, with a 1.19% rate of DVT with no PEs and 1 death due to an unrelated cause. There was a transfusion rate of 11.57% with 1.19% patients taken back to theatre for evacuation of haematomas. There were no reported adverse effects of Dabigatran.
Our treatment protocol is a novel practical approach for VTE prophylaxis in hip and knee replacement patients. This approach shows promising data but no definitive evidence to warrant wide-spread use of this new regime. This data can act as a foundation for larger randomised clinical trials.
Dabigatran; VTE prophylaxis; Arthroplasty; DVT; PE
Obesity, characterised by increased fat mass and is currently regarded as a pro-inflammatory state and often associated with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) including Myocardial infarction. There is an upregulation of inflammatory markers such as interleukin-6, interleukin-6 receptor and acute phase protein CRP in Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI) patients but the exact mechanism linking obesity and inflammation is not known. It is of our interest to investigate if serum leptin (ob gene product) is associated with AMI and correlated with inflammatory proteins namely Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and high sensitivity - C reactive protein (hs-CRP).
Serum leptin levels were significantly higher in AMI patients when compared to Non-CVD controls. IL-6 and hs-CRP were also elevated in the AMI group and leptin correlated positively with IL-6 and hs-CRP. Incidentally this is the first report from Chennai based population, India.
The strong correlation between serum levels of leptin and IL-6 implicates an involvement of leptin in the upregulation of inflammatory cytokines during AMI. We hypothesise that the increase in values of IL-6, hs-CRP and their correlation to leptin in AMI patients could be due to participation of leptin in the signaling cascade after myocardial ischemia.
Leptin; IL-6; CRP; Obesity; Cardiovascular disease; Acute myocardial infarction
Cardiovascular disease with disturbances in the haemostatic system, might lead to thrombotic complications with clinical manifestations like acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and stroke. Activation of the coagulation cascade with subsequent increased thrombin generation, characterizes a prothrombotic phenotype. In the present study we investigated whether prothrombotic markers were associated with risk factors and clinical subgroups in a cohort of patients with angiographically verified coronary artery disease (CAD). The patients were randomized to long-term treatment with the antiplatelet drugs aspirin or clopidogrel, and we further investigated the effect on hypercoagulability of such treatment for 1 year, of which limited data exists.
Venous blood samples were collected in fasting condition between 08:00 and 10:30 am, at baseline when all patients were on aspirin therapy (n = 1001) and in 276 patients after 1 year follow-up on aspirin or clopidogrel. In vivo thrombin generation was assessed by prothrombin fragment 1 + 2 (F1+2) and D-dimer, and the endogenous thrombin potentiale (ETP) in the calibrated automated thrombogram (CAT) assay, representing ex vivo thrombin generation. In addition soluble tissue factor (sTF) and free- and total tissue factor pathway inhibitor (TFPI) were measured.
We found age to be significantly associated with F1+2 and D-dimer (β = 0.229 and β =0.417 respectively, p <0.001, both). Otherwise, only weak associations were found. F1+2 and D-dimer were higher in women compared to men (p <0.001 and p = 0.033, respectively). Smokers had elevated levels of ETP compared to non-smokers (p = 0.014). Additionally, patients on renin-angiotensin system (RAS) inhibition showed significantly higher levels of F1+2, compared to non-users (p = 0.013). Both aspirin and clopidogrel reduced levels of ETP after 12 months intervention (p = 0.003 and p <0.001, respectively) and the levels of F1+2 were significantly more reduced on aspirin compared to clopidogrel (p = 0.023).
In the present population of stable CAD, we could demonstrate a more hypercoagulable profile among women, smokers and patients on RAS medication, assessed by the prothrombotic markers F1+2, D-dimer and ETP. Long-term antiplatelet treatment with aspirin alone seems to attenuate thrombin generation to a greater extent than with clopidogrel alone. The study is registered at http://www.clinicaltrials.gov: NCT00222261.
Thrombin generation; Coronary artery disease; Hypercoagulability; Prothrombotic markers; The CAT assay; Endogenous thrombin potentiale; Antiplatelet treatment; Aspirin; Clopidogrel
Arterial thrombosis triggered by vascular injury is a balance between thrombus growth and thrombus fragmentation (dethrombosis). Unbalance towards thrombus growth can lead to vascular occlusion, downstream ischemia and tissue damage.
Here we describe the development of a simple methodology that allows for continuous real time monitoring and quantification of both processes during perfusion of human blood under arterial shear rate conditions. Using this methodology, we have studied the effects of antiplatelet agents targeting COX-1 (aspirin), P2Y12 (2-MeSAMP, clopidogrel), GP IIb-IIIa (eptifibatide) and their combinations on the kinetics of thrombosis over time.
Untreated samples of blood perfused over type III collagen at arterial rates of shear promoted the growth of stable thrombi. Modulation by eptifibatide affected thrombus growth, while that mediated by 2-MeSAMP and aspirin affected thrombus stability. Using this technique, we confirmed the primacy of continuous signaling by the ADP autocrine loop acting on P2Y12 in the maintenance of thrombus stability. Analysis of the kinetics of thrombosis revealed that continuous and prolonged analysis of thrombosis is required to capture the role of platelet signaling pathways in their entirety. Furthermore, studies evaluating the thrombotic profiles of 20 healthy volunteers treated with aspirin, clopidogrel or their combination indicated that while three individuals did not benefits from either aspirin or clopidogrel treatments, all individuals displayed marked destabilization profiles when treated with the combination regimen.
These results show the utility of a simple perfusion chamber technology to assess in real time the activity of antiplatelet drugs and their combinations. It offers the opportunity to perform pharmacodynamic monitoring of arterial thrombosis in clinical trials and to investigate novel strategies directed at inhibiting thrombus stability in the management of cardiovascular disease.
Real time; Perfusion; Thrombosis; Kinetics; Antiplatelet drugs
The aim was to investigate, whether 5,000 IUaXa/day certoparin lowers the incidence of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in patients undergoing elective hip replacement surgery vs. 3,000 IUaXa/day. Double-blind, multicenter, randomised trial in 500 patients. Primary endpoint: incidence of symptomatic or asymptomatic DVT (bilateral ascending venography).
Mean age was 71 ± 10 years with a higher prevalence of previous DVT (8vs.4%) and pulmonary embolism (PE) (4vs.1%) in the high dose group. Mean duration of surgery was 82 ± 32 and 85 ± 36 min. DVT was detected in 28 (11.1%) of the low dose and 35 (14.1%) of the high dose group (p = n.s.). Combined distal-proximal DVT was observed in 5 (2%) and 4 (1.6%) patients respectively. No difference in bleeding events was found.
This trial confirms prior data showing that the conventional dosage of 3,000 IU aXa is effective and safe for the prevention of venous thromboembolic events after hip replacement surgery.
There has been a shift towards greater use of neuraxial over general anaesthesia for patients undergoing total hip or knee arthroplasty. Furthermore, suggestions that peripheral nerve block may reduce adverse effects have recently been put forward. Although older studies showed a reduction in venous thromboembolism (VTE) with neuraxial compared with general anaesthesia, this difference has not been confirmed in studies using effective current thromboprophylaxis. We used a large data set to investigate the pattern of anaesthesia usage, and whether anaesthesia type affects efficacy and bleeding outcomes of thromboprophylaxis overall, within each treatment group, or for the novel oral anticoagulant dabigatran etexilate versus enoxaparin.
Three previously reported trials compared 220 mg and 150 mg dabigatran etexilate once daily with enoxaparin after knee or hip arthroplasty. A pooled analysis was performed in patients receiving general or neuraxial anaesthesia, or the combination of either with peripheral nerve block (n = 8062). Outcome measures were major VTE plus VTE-related mortality, major bleeding and major plus clinically relevant bleeding events.
General, neuraxial and combination anaesthesia were used in 29%, 52% and 19% of patients, respectively. Differences in efficacy and safety between anaesthesia subgroups were small and not significant, except for a slightly higher rate of major VTE and VTE-related mortality with general versus neuraxial anaesthesia (odds ratio: 1.40; 95% confidence interval: 1.03–1.90; p = 0.035) in the overall population. There were no significant effects of anaesthesia type on efficacy or safety of dabigatran etexilate versus enoxaparin.
Anaesthesia type did not greatly affect efficacy and safety outcomes in the pooled population of all three treatment groups. The efficacy and safety of dabigatran etexilate was comparable with enoxaparin, regardless of type of anaesthesia.
ClinicalTrials.gov identifiers: NCT00168805, NCT00168818, NCT00152971.
Thromboprophylaxis; Type of anaesthesia; Venous thromboembolism; Bleeding; Dabigatran etexilate
Thrombosis and hemostasis related disease have a heavy burden in cardiovascular disease and it is important to have a journal where research into this can be accessed by all.
DVT is the main cause of death in hospitalized patients and thromboprophylaxis is the only way to prevent these deaths. International recommendations suggested that active monitoring of DVT/PE prophylaxis can improve the efficacy in Hospitals.
We performed a cohort study in three consecutives periods to evaluate DVT prophylaxis in 388 adults hospitalized in a General Hospital.
85% of the population had high risk factors for DVT. Thromboprophylaxis was in accordance with local and International guidelines (ACCP 2008) in 72.7% and 86% of the patients respectively. No significant difference could be founded between clinical and surgical patients. One every 10 patients received higher prophylaxis than suggested by guidelines and two out of ten received deficient or no prophylaxis. The worst 2 groups of patients were those with moderate/low risk of DVT and the group with a contraindication to pharmacologic prophylaxis. We observed a progressive improvement of the DVT prophylaxis in the 3 periods of evaluation.
Although the rate of recommended thromboprophylaxis is higher than many other reports in the region we still have some areas where we need to improve. Regular audits like these are very helpful to find out what specific areas of the hospital needs some careful attention in order to have a better quality of assistance.
The clinical use of Sodium nitroprusside (SNP) may be associated with an alteration of platelet function. The main focus of this study was the effect of SNP on platelet aggregation in the absence or presence of endothelial cells.
Methods: Platelets were incubated with different concentrations of SNP with and without endothelial cells. Platelet aggregation was induced by ADP.
Results: Platelet aggregation was significantly inhibited by all concentrations of SNP. Endothelial cells significantly increased this inhibitory effect of SNP. Time course studies showed an inverse correlation of incubation time to platelet aggregation inhibition in the absence of endothelial cells, and a direct correlation in the presence of endothelial cells. Blocking platelet and endothelial cell guanylate cyclase with 1 H-(1,2,4)-oxadiazolo(4,3-a) quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ), or pretreatment of the endothelial cells with cyclooxygenase – inhibitors, had no influence on the increased inhibitory effect of the endothelial cells. Cyanide reversed the inhibitory effect of SNP completely.
Conclusion: Endothelial cells play an important role in the SNP mediated inhibition of platelet aggregation. The effect is reversible only by cyanide, not by blocking classical NO signal transduction.
Nitric oxide (NO); Platelet aggregation; Sodium-nitro-prusside (SNP); Cyanide; Endothelial cells
Background and objectives
The number of patients treated with oral anticoagulation (OAC) is increasing and these patients are monitored by International Normalized Ratio (INR). Bleeding complications are common and we speculate if this is related to the limitation of INR only reflecting the initiation steps of the haemostatic process. The objective of the present review was to reassess the evidence for using INR as a tool to guide administration of prothrombin complex concentrates (PCC) to OAC patients. A Medline and Cochrane database search was conducted using the following keywords: prothrombin complex concentrate, reversal of oral anticoagulation and international normalized ratio (INR). Thirty-three articles were contracted and a total of ten studies were eligible after applying inclusion and exclusion criteria encompassing only 339 patients. No consensus regarding optimal target INR value to aim for when reversing OAC was found. In three of the studies it was reported that patients reaching their target INR continued to bleed, whereas three studies reviewed reported good haemostatic response also in patients that did not reach their target INR. The present review found limited evidence for the usefulness of INR as a tool to monitor and guide reversal of OAC induced coagulopathy in patients with PCC, which is expected given that it is a plasma-based assay only reflecting a limited part of the haemostatic process.
INR; PCC; OAC; Anticoagulation reversal; Haemostatic efficacy
A sixty year old male presented with dark urine, symptomatic anaemia and peripheral gangrene following cold exposure. Investigations revealed that he had haemolysis and serological evidence of recent Epstein Barr virus infection. Although acrocyanosis is commonly associated with cold agglutinin disease, gangrene is a rare complication. Management of secondary cold agglutinin disease is mainly supportive.
Cold autoimmune haemolytic anaemia; Haemolysis; Gangrene
Patients with heightened platelet reactivity in response to antiplatelet agents are at an increased risk of recurrent ischemic events. However, there is a lack of diagnostic criteria for increased response to combined aspirin/clopidogrel therapy. The challenge is to identify patients at risk of bleeding. This study sought to characterize bleeding tendency in patients treated with aspirin and clopidogrel.
In a single-center prospective study, 100 patients under long-term aspirin/clopidogrel treatment, the effect of therapy was assayed by template bleeding time (BT) and the inhibition of platelet aggregation (IPA) by light transmission aggregometry (LTA). Arachidonic acid (0.625 mmol/L) and adenosine diphosphate (ADP; 2, 4, and 8 μmol/L) were used as platelet agonists.
Bleeding episodes (28 nuisance, 2 hematuria [1 severe], 1 severe proctorrhagia, 1 severe epistaxis) were significantly more frequent in patients with longer BT. Template BT ≥ 24 min was associated with bleeding episodes (28 of 32). Risk of bleeding increased 17.4% for each 1 min increase in BT. Correlation was found between BT and IPAmax in response to ADP 2 μmol/L but not to ADP 4 or 8 μmol/L.
In patients treated with dual aspirin/clopidogrel therapy, nuisance and internal bleeding were significantly associated with template BT and with IPAmax in response to ADP 2 μmol/L but not in response to ADP 4 μmol/L or 8 μmol/L.
nuisance bleeding; bleeding time; platelet; inhibition of platelet aggregation; IPA