Impact of thromboprophylaxis guidelines on clinical outcomes following total hip and total knee replacement

Rita Selby, Bijan J. Borah, Heather P. McDonald, Henry J. Henk, Mark Crowther, Philip S. Wells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Background: The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) guidelines recommends thromboprophylaxis for total hip replacement (THR) and total knee replacement (TKR) patients. We examined alignment with ACCP thromboprophylaxis guidelines among THR/TKR patients, and compared symptomatic venous thromboembolism (VTE), bleeding event rates and risk factors for VTE between patients receiving ACCP-recommended thromboprophylaxis ('ACCP') and those who did not ('non-ACCP'). Methods: This retrospective observational study used a large US health plan claims database that was linked to an inpatient database containing detailed inpatient medication use and a database containing date-of-death information. Patients who had THR/TKR surgery between April 01, 2004 and December 31, 2006 were included. Comparisons of VTE and bleeding events between ACCP and non-ACCP patients were analyzed using chi-squared tests and multivariate logistic regression. Results: Of 3,497 linked patients, 1,395 (40%) received ACCP recommended thromboprophylaxis. Of the patients who received non-ACCP recommended prophylaxis the majority (81%) received shorter than the recommended minimum 10 day prophylaxis and 118 (5.6%) of patients received no prophylaxis. Overall, non-ACCP patients were almost twice as likely to experience an incident DVT (3.76% versus 2.01%, p = 0.003) and more than eight times as likely to experience an incident PE (1.19% versus 0.14%, p = 0.001) relative to ACCP patients; there were no statistically significant difference in bleeding rates. Multivariate logistic regression indicated that the odds of a VTE event were significantly lower for ACCP patients (DVT: OR = 0.54; p = 0.006; PE: OR = 0.12; p = 0.004). Conclusions: This study offers a unique perspective on 'real-world' thromboprophylaxis patterns and associated outcomes in THR and TKR patients in the US. It suggests that only 40% of THR/TKR patients receive ACCP-recommended thromboprophylaxis and that not receiving ACCP thromboprophylaxis is an independent risk factor for both DVT and PE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)166-172
Number of pages7
JournalThrombosis research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • ACCP guidelines
  • VTE prophylaxis
  • bleeding
  • elective total hip replacement
  • elective total knee replacement
  • retrospective database analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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