Relationship between anticoagulation intensity and thrombotic or bleeding outcomes among outpatients with continuous-flow left ventricular assist devices

Michael E. Nassif, Shane J. LaRue, David S. Raymer, Eric Novak, Justin M. Vader, Gregory A. Ewald, Brian F. Gage

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background - We evaluated thrombotic and bleeding outcomes in patients with continuous-flow left ventricular assist devices (CF-LVADs), stratified by anticoagulation intensity. Previous studies of outpatients with CF-LVADs have suggested that target international normalized ratio (INR) values <2.5 (range, 2-3) may be used. However, recent studies reported an increase in pump thrombosis among CF-LVADs, especially within the first 6 months of implant. Methods and Results - We retrospectively reviewed 249 outpatients at our center who received a CF-LVAD between January 2005 and August 2013. Using Poisson models, we analyzed their 10 927 INRs to determine INR-specific rates of thrombotic (ischemic stroke and suspected pump thrombosis) and hemorrhagic (gastrointestinal bleeding and hemorrhagic stroke) events occurring outside of the hospital. In multivariate analyses, we adjusted for age, sex, atrial fibrillation, coronary disease, and LVAD type as time-dependent Cox proportional hazard models. During a mean follow-up of 17.6±13.6 months, thrombotic events occurred in 46 outpatients. The highest event rate (0.40 thrombotic events per patient-year) was in the INR range of <1.5, but INR values of 1.5 to 1.99 also had high rates (0.16 thrombotic events per patient-year). INR was inversely associated with thrombotic events (hazard ratio, 0.40; 95% confidence interval, 0.22-0.72; P=0.002). The optimal INR based on weighted mortality of thrombotic and bleeding events was 2.6. Conclusions - INR is inversely related to thrombotic events occurring outside of the hospital among patients supported with CF-LVADs. INR values <2.0 increase the rate of thrombotic events occurring outside of the hospital among patients supported with CF-LVADs.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere002680
JournalCirculation: Heart Failure
Volume9
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2016

Keywords

  • atrial fibrillation
  • follow-up studies
  • hemorrhage
  • international normalized ratio stroke

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