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June 1989

Low Incidence of Thrombocytopenia With Porcine Mucosal HeparinA Prospective Multicenter Study

Author Affiliations

From the Thrombosis Research Center and Department of Medicine, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa (Drs Rao and Colman); the Division of Hematology-Oncology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Dr White); the Departments of Medicine and Pathology, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Mo (Dr Sherman); and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (Drs Lan and Ball).

Arch Intern Med. 1989;149(6):1285-1288. doi:10.1001/archinte.1989.00390060039008

• We treated 193 patients either intravenously (94) or subcutaneously (99) for at least 5 days with porcine intestinal mucosal heparin and followed them up prospectively with frequent platelet counts to determine the incidence of heparin-related thrombocytopenia and arterial thrombosis. None of the patients in the study developed severe thrombocytopenia (platelet count, 100 × 109/L) or arterial thrombosis. Eight patients had a platelet count of 100 to 140×109/L on one occasion, with a count of 140 × 109/L on the subsequent measurement. The mean (± SD) values of the initial and lowest platelet counts during therapy in all patients were 288±100×109/L and 253±88× 109/L, respectively, with the lowest counts occurring on day 4.1 ± 4.2. A least-squares line was computed for each patient to fit the day and counts; the slopes were significantly different from zero and negative in 7.8% of patients and positive in 14.5%. This multicenter study confirms the reports that the incidence of heparinrelated severe thrombocytopenia and arterial thrombosis is distinctly low in patients treated with porcine-mucosal heparin.

(Arch Intern Med. 1989;149:1285-1288)