Background. The treatment of choice in steroid-resistant immune thrombocytopenia is still controversial, due to the recent advent of new drugs (anti-CD20 antibodies and thrombopoietin mimetics) which have encouraged a generalized tendency to delay splenectomy. Consequently, the importance to define the efficacy and safety of splenectomy in the long-term is substantial. Patients and Methods. We retrospectively analyzed the data of 233 patients affected by immune thrombocytopenia, who underwent splenectomy between 1959 and 2001, in 6 European hematological Institutions and have now a minimum follow-up of 10 years from surgery. Results. Of the 233 patients, 180 (77%) achieved a complete response and 26 (11%) a response. Sixty-eight out of 206 (33%) responsive patients relapsed, mostly (75%) within 4 years from first response. In 92 patients (39.5%), further treatment was required after splenectomy, which was effective in 76 cases (83%). In 138 patients (59%) response was maintained, free of any treatment, at last contact. No significant association between baseline characteristics and likelihood of stable response was found. Overall, 73 (31%) and 58 (25%) patients experienced at least one infectious or hemorrhagic complication, which were fatal in 2 and 3 patients, respectively. A stable response to splenectomy was associated with a lower rate of infections (p=0.004) and hemorrhages (p<0.0001). Thrombosis developed in 18 patients (8%), fatal in 4. Conclusions. Splenectomy achieved a long-term stable responses in around 60% of cases. Complications mainly affected non-responding patients and were fatal in a minority of the cases.
Although duodenal diverticula are common, periampullary duodenal diverticula are rare. Periampullary duodenal diverticula are usually asymptomatic and may be difficult to diagnose and treat. However, they may present with massive bleeding, requiring prompt diagnosis.
Background Idarucizumab, a monoclonal antibody fragment, was developed to reverse the anticoagulant effect of dabigatran. Methods We performed a multicenter, prospective, open-label study to determine whether 5 g of intravenous idarucizumab would be able to reverse the anticoagulant effect of dabigatran in patients who had uncontrolled bleeding (group A) or were about to undergo an urgent procedure (group B). The primary end point was the maximum percentage reversal of the anticoagulant effect of dabigatran within 4 hours after the administration of idarucizumab, on the basis of the diluted thrombin time or ecarin clotting time. Secondary end points included the restoration of hemostasis and safety measures. Results A total of 503 patients were enrolled: 301 in group A, and 202 in group B. The median maximum percentage reversal of dabigatran was 100% (95% confidence interval, 100 to 100), on the basis of either the diluted thrombin time or the ecarin clotting time. In group A, 137 patients (45.5%) presented with gastrointestinal bleeding and 98 (32.6%) presented with intracranial hemorrhage; among the patients who could be assessed, the median time to the cessation of bleeding was 2.5 hours. In group B, the median time to the initiation of the intended procedure was 1.6 hours; periprocedural hemostasis was assessed as normal in 93.4% of the patients, mildly abnormal in 5.1%, and moderately abnormal in 1.5%. At 90 days, thrombotic events had occurred in 6.3% of the patients in group A and in 7.4% in group B, and the mortality rate was 18.8% and 18.9%, respectively. There were no serious adverse safety signals. Conclusions In emergency situations, idarucizumab rapidly, durably, and safely reversed the anticoagulant effect of dabigatran. (Funded by Boehringer Ingelheim; RE-VERSE AD ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02104947 .).
Severe trauma continues to represent a global public health issue and mortality and morbidity in trauma patients remains substantial. A number of initiatives have aimed to provide guidance on the management of trauma patients. This document focuses on the management of major bleeding and coagulopathy following trauma and encourages adaptation of the guiding principles to each local situation and implementation within each institution.
Background Andexanet alfa (andexanet) is a recombinant modified human factor Xa decoy protein that has been shown to reverse the inhibition of factor Xa in healthy volunteers. Methods In this multicenter, prospective, open-label, single-group study, we evaluated 67 patients who had acute major bleeding within 18 hours after the administration of a factor Xa inhibitor. The patients all received a bolus of andexanet followed by a 2-hour infusion of the drug. Patients were evaluated for changes in measures of anti-factor Xa activity and were assessed for clinical hemostatic efficacy during a 12-hour period. All the patients were subsequently followed for 30 days. The efficacy population of 47 patients had a baseline value for anti-factor Xa activity of at least 75 ng per milliliter (or ≥0.5 IU per milliliter for those receiving enoxaparin) and had confirmed bleeding severity at adjudication. Results The mean age of the patients was 77 years; most of the patients had substantial cardiovascular disease. Bleeding was predominantly gastrointestinal or intracranial. The mean (±SD) time from emergency department presentation to the administration of the andexanet bolus was 4.8±1.8 hours. After the bolus administration, the median anti-factor Xa activity decreased by 89% (95% confidence interval [CI], 58 to 94) from baseline among patients receiving rivaroxaban and by 93% (95% CI, 87 to 94) among patients receiving apixaban. These levels remained similar during the 2-hour infusion. Four hours after the end of the infusion, there was a relative decrease from baseline of 39% in the measure of anti-factor Xa activity among patients receiving rivaroxaban and of 30% among those receiving apixaban. Twelve hours after the andexanet infusion, clinical hemostasis was adjudicated as excellent or good in 37 of 47 patients in the efficacy analysis (79%; 95% CI, 64 to 89). Thrombotic events occurred in 12 of 67 patients (18%) during the 30-day follow-up. Conclusions On the basis of a descriptive preliminary analysis, an initial bolus and subsequent 2-hour infusion of andexanet substantially reduced anti-factor Xa activity in patients with acute major bleeding associated with factor Xa inhibitors, with effective hemostasis occurring in 79%. (Funded by Portola Pharmaceuticals; ANNEXA-4 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02329327 .).
Annually in Japanese waters, small cetaceans are killed in “drive hunts” with quotas set by the government of Japan. The Taiji Fishing Cooperative in Japan has published the details of a new killing method that involves cutting (transecting) the spinal cord and purports to reduce time to death. The method involves the repeated insertion of a metal rod followed by the plugging of the wound to prevent blood loss into the water. To date, a paucity of data exists regarding these methods utilized in the drive hunts. Our veterinary and behavioral analysis of video documentation of this method indicates that it does not immediately lead to death and that the time to death data provided in the description of the method, based on termination of breathing and movement, is not supported by the available video data. The method employed causes damage to the vertebral blood vessels and the vascular rete from insertion of the rod that will lead to significant hemorrhage, but this alone would not produce a rapid death in a large mammal of this type. The method induces paraplegia (paralysis of the body) and death through trauma and gradual blood loss. This killing method does not conform to the recognized requirement for “immediate insensibility” and would not be tolerated or permitted in any regulated slaughterhouse process in the developed world.
Background The potential benefit of dual antiplatelet therapy beyond 1 year after a myocardial infarction has not been established. We investigated the efficacy and safety of ticagrelor, a P2Y12 receptor antagonist with established efficacy after an acute coronary syndrome, in this context. Methods We randomly assigned, in a double-blind 1:1:1 fashion, 21,162 patients who had had a myocardial infarction 1 to 3 years earlier to ticagrelor at a dose of 90 mg twice daily, ticagrelor at a dose of 60 mg twice daily, or placebo. All the patients were to receive low-dose aspirin and were followed for a median of 33 months. The primary efficacy end point was the composite of cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, or stroke. The primary safety end point was Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction (TIMI) major bleeding. Results The two ticagrelor doses each reduced, as compared with placebo, the rate of the primary efficacy end point, with Kaplan-Meier rates at 3 years of 7.85% in the group that received 90 mg of ticagrelor twice daily, 7.77% in the group that received 60 mg of ticagrelor twice daily, and 9.04% in the placebo group (hazard ratio for 90 mg of ticagrelor vs. placebo, 0.85; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.75 to 0.96; P=0.008; hazard ratio for 60 mg of ticagrelor vs. placebo, 0.84; 95% CI, 0.74 to 0.95; P=0.004). Rates of TIMI major bleeding were higher with ticagrelor (2.60% with 90 mg and 2.30% with 60 mg) than with placebo (1.06%) (P<0.001 for each dose vs. placebo); the rates of intracranial hemorrhage or fatal bleeding in the three groups were 0.63%, 0.71%, and 0.60%, respectively. Conclusions In patients with a myocardial infarction more than 1 year previously, treatment with ticagrelor significantly reduced the risk of cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, or stroke and increased the risk of major bleeding. (Funded by AstraZeneca; PEGASUS-TIMI 54 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01225562 .).
Objective To determine the safety of direct oral anticoagulant (DOAC) use compared with warfarin use for the treatment of venous thromboembolism.Design Retrospective matched cohort study conducted between 1 January 2009 and 31 March 2016.Setting Community based, using healthcare data from six jurisdictions in Canada and the United States.Participants 59 525 adults (12 489 DOAC users; 47 036 warfarin users) with a new diagnosis of venous thromboembolism and a prescription for a DOAC or warfarin within 30 days of diagnosis.Main outcome measures Outcomes included hospital admission or emergency department visit for major bleeding and all cause mortality within 90 days after starting treatment. Propensity score matching and shared frailty models were used to estimate adjusted hazard ratios of the outcomes comparing DOACs with warfarin. Analyses were conducted independently at each site, with meta-analytical methods used to estimate pooled hazard ratios across sites.Results Of the 59 525 participants, 1967 (3.3%) had a major bleed and 1029 (1.7%) died over a mean follow-up of 85.2 days. The risk of major bleeding was similar for DOAC compared with warfarin use (pooled hazard ratio 0.92, 95% confidence interval 0.82 to 1.03), with the overall direction of the association favouring DOAC use. No difference was found in the risk of death (pooled hazard ratio 0.99, 0.84 to 1.16) for DOACs compared with warfarin use. There was no evidence of heterogeneity across centres, between patients with and without chronic kidney disease, across age groups, or between male and female patients.Conclusions In this analysis of adults with incident venous thromboembolism, treatment with DOACs, compared with warfarin, was not associated with an increased risk of major bleeding or all cause mortality in the first 90 days of treatment.Trial registration Clinical trials NCT02833987.
Rates of acute intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) increase in winter months but the magnitude of risk is unknown. We aimed to quantify the association of ambient temperature with the risk of ICH in the Intensive Blood Pressure Reduction in Acute Cerebral Haemorrhage Trial (INTERACT2) participants on an hourly timescale.
Inadequate resuscitation of major haemorrhage is an important cause of avoidable death in severely injured patients. Early recognition of blood loss, control of bleeding and restoration of circulating volume are critical to the management of trauma shock, and transfusion of blood components is a key intervention. Vital signs may be inadequate to determine the need for transfusion, and resuscitation regimens targeting vital signs may be harmful in the context of uncontrolled bleeding. This article addresses current concepts in haemostatic resuscitation. Recent guidelines on the diagnosis and treatment of coagulopathy in major trauma, and the role of component and adjuvant therapies, are considered. Finally, the potential role of thromboelastography and rotational thromboelastometry are discussed.