Background Venous thromboembolic events are one of the main causes of death in cancer patients. Therefore, attempts have been made to prevent these events and reduce substantial burden on patient health.
Purpose This study aimed to evaluate the appropriateness of thromboprophylaxis in hospitalised cancer patients.
Material and methods Medical records of 196 cancer patients hospitalised in two oncology wards of a tertiary care teaching hospital were investigated retrospectively. Appropriateness of thromboprophylaxis was determined using a local protocol prepared based on international guidelines.
Results Forty-seven out of 196 prescriptions (23.5%) were appropriate according the local protocol. About 76% (149/196) of patients did not have any acute medical illness or risk factors for thromboembolism and were admitted only to receive short-course chemotherapy. Enoxaparin was the drug used for 194 patients and unfractionated heparin was used for only two patients. Dose adjustment was not performed in three patients who needed dose modification with respect to renal impairment or obesity.
Conclusion This study has found that the frequency of thromboprophylaxis was considerably high in the study population. In the absence of an acute medical illness or other risk factors, hospitalisation per se does not justify administration of pharmacologic agents for thromboembolism prophylaxis. Implementation of local protocols prepared based on international guidelines seems necessary to rationalise thromboprophylaxis.
References and/or Acknowledgements We gratefully appreciate Dr Soha Namazi for her expert advice.
No conflict of interest
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