Thrombosis and Hemostasis Research Unit, Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark. Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Viborg Regional Hospital, Viborg, Denmark. Department of Clinical Medicine, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
Solid malignant neoplasms have the capability of disturbing the fibrinolytic system, leading to primary hyperfibrinolysis, a paraneoplastic syndrome that potentially results in severe bleeding. Yet, the full extent of primary hyperfibrinolysis in solid malignant neoplasms is unknown. Thus, the purpose of this study was to systematically review the current literature regarding clinical manifestations, biochemical diagnosis, and treatment of primary hyperfibrinolysis
in patients with solid malignant neoplasms. The review was performed in agreement with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. The databases PubMed, Embase, Scopus, and Web of Science were searched on December 5, 2019, without time limits. Studies were included if they comprised at least one biochemical marker of fibrinolysis in addition to fibrinogen degradation products such as D-dimer, and furthermore included a correlation between biochemical marker and clinical outcome. In total, 12 studies were included. All studies were case reports including a total of 21 patients. Prostate cancer was the most frequently represented cancer type (76%), and the majority of cancer patients had metastatic disease (81%). Spontaneous bleeding was the clinical presentation in the majority of patients (76%), and the most frequently localization for the bleedings was subcutaneous. Antifibrinolytic agents were the most commonly used treatment and ceased bleedings in 80% of patients. Three patients died of uncontrolled bleedings. In conclusion, primary hyperfibrinolysis induced by solid malignant neoplasms is a rare but potentially life-threatening condition that should be considered, especially in patients with metastatic disease presenting with serious, spontaneous subcutaneous bleedings. A standardized diagnostic strategy is strongly needed.