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Pharmacotherapy. 1999 Apr;19(4):383-7.

Two instruments to determine activated partial thromboplastin time: implications for heparin monitoring.

Author information

1
Department of Pharmacy Practice, Auburn University School of Pharmacy, Alabama, USA.

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVE:

To measure the difference in therapeutic ranges of activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT) between two laboratory devices.

DESIGN:

Prospective, controlled laboratory study.

SETTING:

University-affiliated hospital.

PATIENTS:

Thirty inpatients receiving intravenous unfractionated heparin for treatment of myocardial infarction, unstable angina, deep venous thrombosis, or pulmonary embolism.

INTERVENTIONS:

Therapeutic APTT ranges were determined by a portable (whole blood assay) and a central laboratory device (plasma assay) based on heparin serum concentrations. They were compared with APTT ranges equivalent to 1.5-2.5 times the mean normal determination.

MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:

The central laboratory and portable devices produced therapeutic ranges of 61-93 and 56-73 seconds, respectively. Both differed from conventional therapeutic ratios of 1.5-2.5 times the mean normal (41-68 sec). Mean absolute APTT differences between instruments were statistically significant (12 +/- 20 sec, p<0.006), and 58% of paired APTT values differed by more than 10 seconds.

CONCLUSION:

A fixed APTT ratio as a goal for monitoring unfractionated heparin may result in significant underanticoagulation. Individual therapeutic APTT ranges must be reported for each instrument if more than one is used for heparin monitoring.

PMID:
10212007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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