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A Journal on Anesthesiology, Resuscitation, Analgesia and Intensive Care

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Anesthesiology, Analgesia, Resuscitation and Intensive Care
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Minerva Anestesiologica 2004 May;70(5):357-63


language: English

Use of protein C concentrate in critical conditions: clinical experience in pediatric patients with sepsis

Pettenazzo A., Malusa T.

Terapia Intensiva Pediatrica, Dipartimento di Pediatria Università degli Studi di Padova, Padova


The coagulation disturbance, typical of septic conditions, is associated to a reduction of clotting factors in plasma with an “acquired” deficiency (from consumption) of protein C. As observed with “purpura fulminans” in neonates affected by congenital protein C deficiency, administration of protein C concentrate has proved to reduce thrombotic manifestations and to improve morbidity and mortality of children with septic shock. The Protein C concentrate is presently utilized as a therapy for patients with a congenital deficiency of protein C and several papers in the literature support the efficacy of protein C concentrate in the treatment of children with meningococcus septicemia, with the aim of correcting the acquired protein C deficiency often seen in septic conditions and shown to be strongly correlated to a higher morbidity and mortality. Protein C, given as a plasma concentrate, can exert its therapeutic actions only after activation once in the blood stream: clinical trials with the use of protein C concentrate failed to show any increased risk of bleeding or related disorders. At our PICU 8 children, with sepsis, septic shock and purpura have been treated with protein C concentrate (Ceprotin®); because the plasma protein C level was lower than the normal range (mean value 0.32 IU/ml, range 0.11-0.6 IU/ml). Six children have shown a rapid response to all therapeutic efforts and survived without sequelae and two are died. No adverse reaction was observed during and after Ceprotin® administration to all patients.

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