Blood Thinners May Help Some Bed-ridden

ST. LOUIS, July 9 (UPI) — A U.S. researcher suggests some bedridden patients may benefit from anti-clotting drug therapy.

Study co-author Dr. Roger Yusen of the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis says a treatment plan used to prevent potentially dangerous blood clots in those recovering from surgery helped three groups of patients immobilized by acute medical illness — those in bed all day at the beginning of the trial, those age 75 and older and those who were female.


“We currently treat acutely ill medical patients with a week or two of blood thinners to prevent clots,” Yusen says in a statement. “These results suggest that, depending on the patient, physicians may want to consider extending that treatment for an additional month.”

The study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found blood clots in 2.5 percent of those receiving extended treatment vs. 4 percent in those receiving conventional treatment. Major bleeding risk was increased slightly — going from 0.8 percent in the treatment group to 0.3 percent in the placebo group.

Yusen and colleagues included more than 5,000 patients in the double-blind, placebo-controlled trial using enoxaparin, a form of heparin made by Sanofi-Aventis, the company funding the trial.

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