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Minerva Anestesiologica 2006 June;72(6):389-93


language: English

Critical bleeding in pregnancy: a novel therapeutic approach to bleeding

Baudo F., Caimi T. M., Mostarda G., de Cataldo F., Morra E.

Unit of Thrombosis and Hemostasis, Department of Hematology, Niguarda Hospital, Milan, Italy


Aim. In the developed countries the frequency of life threatening post-partum hemorrhages (PPH) is 1 in 1 000 deliveries with a risk of death of 1-2/100 000 deliveries. Hysterectomies for intractable bleeding are carried out in approximately 50% of the cases. The majority of PPH have obstetrical causes, most frequently atony of the uterus. Hereditary and acquired hemostatic defects are very rare. Guidelines of standard surgical and medical measures are available. In this paper we focus on the use of activated recombinant factor VII (rFVIIa) in PPH.
Methods. A computerized literature search was carried out in PubMed and Ovid for papers published between 2001 and 2005 in the English literature reporting on life-threatening PPH treated with rFVIIa after failure of conventional therapy, including hysterectomy.
Results. We identified 11 papers including 39 patients; in 18 of them the laboratory data were indicative for disseminated intravascular coagulation and in 24 hysterectomy was carried out. Controlled or reduced bleeding was reported in 38 out of 39 treated patients.
Conclusion. The bleeding can occur in a series of events conductive to metabolic complications, hypoxia, disseminate intravascular coagulation, organ damage and multiorgan failure, progressively exhaustive. The therapeutic intervention must be instituted as early as possible before successive complications ensue. These preliminary reports in PPH after failure of conventional standard therapy suggest that rFVIIa is an active agent but should be administered as early as possible before the consequences of severe and intractable bleeding.

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