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Expert Rev Hematol. 2009 Apr;2(2):183-96. doi: 10.1586/ehm.09.8.

Preventing thrombophilia-related complications of pregnancy.

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Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton General Hospital, 237 Barton Street East, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


Pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE) and approximately half of all pregnancy-related VTEs are associated with thrombophilia. Recent studies suggest that there is a link between thrombophilia and other adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as fetal loss, preeclampsia, placental abruption and intrauterine growth restriction. However, the associations reported are modest, and high quality data are limited. Although the most compelling data derive from pregnant women with antiphospholipid antibodies, the use of anticoagulants for the prevention of pregnancy complications other than VTE in women with heritable thrombophilias is becoming more frequent. In this article, we review the impact of the various thrombophilias on pregnancy and its outcome, the evidence for therapies aimed at prevention of thrombophilia-related pregnancy complications, and briefly discuss the role of screening for thrombophilia in pregnancy.

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