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June 6, 1977

Continuous vs Intermittent Heparin Therapy-Reply

JAMA. 1977;237(23):2469. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03270500021003

In view of the retrospective observation by Dr Hey that major hemorrhage from 5,000 units of heparin every six hours is rare, I would suggest that a prospective study might provide some useful information about this technique. Salzman et al1 found that 5,000 to 10,000 units of heparin given every four hours according to patient weight, without regard to laboratory control, produced a 10% incidence of major bleeding.

Regarding the 5% incidence of pulmonary embolus in our patients treated with continuous heparin, this is not statistically significant.