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Intern Med J. 2002 Mar;32(3):84-8.

Minidose (1 mg) warfarin as prophylaxis for central vein catheter thrombosis.

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  • 1Department of Haematology, Christchurch Hospital, University of Otago, New Zealand.



Central vein catheters, which are used in the treatment of cancer patients, are prone to thrombotic complications of the catheter or adjacent vein. Previous studies suggest that 1 mg warfarin daily (minidose) can significantly reduce that risk.


This, study aims to establish whether minidose warfarin could reduce catheter-related thrombosis in adult patients with haematological malignancies.


Patients were randomly selected to receive warfarin or not. The end-points studied were: (i) occlusion by thrombus, (ii) removal of catheter for other reasons or (iii) 90 days free of thrombus.


There was no significant difference in the incidence of catheter thrombosis or venous thrombosis and no significant variation in catheter survival between the study and control groups.


This study found no benefit of the routine use of minidose warfarin for prophylaxis of central vein' catheter thrombosis in patients with haematological malignancies and therefore does not support the routine use of minidose warfarin for prophylaxis in such patients.

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