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Br J Haematol. 2019 Mar;184(5):808-816. doi: 10.1111/bjh.15705. Epub 2018 Dec 4.

Efficacy and safety of prothrombin complex concentrate in patients treated with rivaroxaban or apixaban compared to warfarin presenting with major bleeding.

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Department of Haematology, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust Imperial College London, London, UK.
Centre for Haematology, Imperial College London, London, UK.
Department of Haematology, Royal Brompton Hospital, London, UK.


This retrospective study investigated the efficacy and safety of prothrombin complex concentrates (PCCs) for management of major bleeding events (MBE) in 344 patients receiving the anticoagulants rivaroxaban, apixaban or warfarin during the period January 2016 to April 2018. Median (range) PCC dose was 2000 units (1000-4500). Intracranial haemorrhage (ICH) was the most common indication (137/344, 39·8%) for PCC use followed by gastrointestinal bleeding (93/344, 27%). ICH patients more frequently received rivaroxaban (62·5%) or apixaban (52·5%) compared to warfarin (34·5%), P = 0·002; and visceral bleeding patients received warfarin more frequently (24·2%) than rivaroxaban (5%) or apixaban (10%), P = 0·003. Median rivaroxaban and apixaban levels were 230 ng/ml (47-759) and 159 ng/ml (45-255). Median International Normalised Ratio pre- and post-PCC in patients on warfarin were 3·4 (1·9-15·4) and 1·2 (1·0-1·9). Blood products use was the same between groups. Thirty-day mortality and re-bleeding rates in patients with ICH were 35% (P = 0·50) and 18% (P = 0·90) with no differences between the groups. Thrombosis occurred in 4·1% patients within 30 days with no difference between groups. Two of 91 (2·2%) patients with ICH only (both on warfarin) had ischaemic strokes within 30 days post-PCC. In conclusion, there was no difference in the safety (thrombosis) or efficacy (30-day mortality, re-bleeding) in use of PCC for MBE in patients on warfarin, rivaroxaban or apixaban.


apixaban; major bleeding; prothrombin complex concentrate; rivaroxaban; warfarin

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