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2020 | 92(6) | 22-27
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Implementation of extended prolonged venous thromboembolism prophylaxis with rivaroxaban after major abdominal and pelvic surgery – overview of safety and early outcomes

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Purpose: Venous thromboembolism (VTE) after colorectal surgery is a well-documented complication, resulting in a general recommendation of extended post-discharge prophylaxis. Rivaroxaban, a factor Xa inhibitor, is a daily tablet approved for treatment of VTE and prophylaxis after orthopedic surgery.
Aim: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the safety of rivaroxaban for extended prophylaxis after major abdominal and pelvic surgery.
Methods: This is a retrospective review of patients undergoing major colorectal surgery at a regional hospital in Kiev, Ukraine. Patients received peri-operative VTE prophylaxis with subcutaneous heparin and then transitioned to rivaroxaban for a total of 30 days. Occurrences of major or minor bleeding, blood transfusion, and a need for re-intervention were noted. Phone surveys were administered on post-operative day 30 to assess compliance and satisfaction with the regimen.
Results: A total of 51 patients were included in the study with an average age of 62.4 years. Seventy-one percent of the cases were abdominal, 29% were pelvic cases and 59% were done laparoscopically. There was one episode of major intra-abdominal bleeding requiring return to the operating room. There were 2 minor bleeding episodes which did not require intervention. There were no VTE events in the group. The phone survey response rate was 100%. All but one patient reported having completed the full course of rivaroxaban. Patients reported that oral prophylaxis was easy to adhere to and preferable compared to injections.
Conclusion: Implementation of extended prophylaxis with rivaroxaban is easy, safe and does not increase rates of postoperative bleeding.
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