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Curr Opin Pulm Med. 2009 Sep;15(5):455-62. doi: 10.1097/MCP.0b013e32832ea4dd.

Bleeding and venous thromboembolism in the critically ill with emphasis on patients with renal insufficiency.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. debcook@mcmaster.ca



The purpose of this review is to critique and summarize clinical literature relevant to thromboprophylaxis in critically ill patients with renal insufficiency. The specific objectives are to discuss factors that increase the risks for bleeding and venous thromboembolism in critically ill patients, with a focus on patients with renal insufficiency, and to consider prophylaxis management options and the rationale for their use.


Herein, we discuss both bleeding and venous thromboembolism in this population, both of which are of concern as complications. Bleeding is common among critically ill patients and has important clinical consequences. Critically ill patients with renal insufficiency require special consideration in regard to thromboprophylaxis. Such patients have a four-fold higher risk for developing venous thromboembolism compared with ICU patients without renal insufficiency. ICU patients have dynamic risks of thrombosis and bleeding. Invasive procedures may require temporary interruption of anticoagulants. Consequently, approaches to thromboprophylaxis require daily reevaluation.


We provide some considerations for practice in the conclusion section.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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