Procedure-related bleeding risk in patients with cirrhosis and severe thrombocytopenia
Alvaro D, Caporaso N, Giovanni Giannini E, Iacobellis A, Morelli M, Toniutto P, Violi F
European journal of clinical investigation. 2021;:e13508
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BACKGROUND Gaps of knowledge still exist about the potential association between severe thrombocytopenia and increased risk of procedure-associated bleeding in patients with liver disease. METHODS In this narrative review we aimed at examining the association between procedure-related bleeding risk and platelet count in patients with cirrhosis and severe thrombocytopenia in various settings. We updated to 2020 a previously conducted literature search using MEDLINE/PubMed and EMBASE. The search string included clinical studies, adult patients with chronic liver disease and thrombocytopenia undergoing invasive procedures, any interventions and comparators, and haemorrhagic events of any severity as outcome. RESULTS The literature search identified 1,276 unique publications, 15 studies met the inclusion criteria and were analysed together with those identified by the previously search. Most of the new studies included in our analysis did not assess the association between post-procedural bleeding risk and platelet count alone in patients with chronic liver disease. Furthermore, some results could have been biased by prophylactic platelet transfusions. A few studies found that severe thrombocytopenia may be predictive of bleeding following percutaneous liver biopsy, dental extractions, percutaneous ablation of liver tumours, and endoscopic polypectomy. CONCLUSIONS Currently available literature cannot support definitive conclusions about the appropriate target platelet counts to improve the risk of bleeding in cirrhotic patients who underwent invasive procedures; moreover, it showed enormous variability in the use of prophylactic platelet transfusions.
Postnatal intervention for the treatment of FNAIT: a systematic review
Baker JM, Shehata N, Bussel J, Murphy MF, Greinacher A, Bakchoul T, Massey E, Lieberman L, Landry D, Tanael S, et al
Journal of perinatology : official journal of the California Perinatal Association. 2019
OBJECTIVE Fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (FNAIT) is associated with life-threatening bleeding. This systematic review of postnatal management of FNAIT examined transfusion of human platelet antigen (HPA) selected or unselected platelets, and/or IVIg on platelet increments, hemorrhage and mortality. STUDY DESIGN MEDLINE, EMBASE and Cochrane searches were conducted until 11 May 2018. RESULT Of 754 neonates, 382 received platelet transfusions (51%). HPA-selected platelets resulted in higher platelet increments and longer response times than HPA-unselected platelets. However, unselected platelets generally led to sufficient platelet increments to 30 x 10(9)/L, a level above which intracranial hemorrhage or other life-threatening bleeding rarely occurred. Platelet increments were not improved with the addition of IVIg to platelet transfusion. CONCLUSION Overall, HPA-selected platelet transfusions were more effective than HPA-unselected platelets but unselected platelets were often effective enough to achieve clinical goals. Available studies do not clearly demonstrate a benefit for addition of IVIg to platelet transfusion.
A systematic literature review on the use of platelet transfusions in patients with thrombocytopenia
Newland A, Bentley R, Jakubowska A, Liebman H, Lorens J, Peck-Radosavljevic M, Taieb V, Takami A, Tateishi R, Younossi ZM
Hematology (Amsterdam, Netherlands). 2019;24(1):679-719
Objective: Investigate globally, current treatment patterns, benefit-risk assessments, humanistic, societal and economic burden of platelet transfusion (PT). Methods: Publications from 1998 to June 27, 2018 were identified, based on databases searches including MEDLINE(R); Embase and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. Data from studies meeting pre-specified criteria were extracted and validated by independent reviewers. Data were obtained for efficacy and safety from randomized controlled trials (RCTs); data for epidemiology, treatment patterns, effectiveness, safety, humanistic and societal burden from real-world evidence (RWE) studies; and economic data from both. Results: A total of 3425 abstracts, 194 publications (190 studies) were included. PT use varied widely, from 0%-100% of TCP patients; 1.7%-24.5% in large studies (>1000 patients). Most were used prophylactically rather than therapeutically. 5 of 43 RCTs compared prophylactic PT with no intervention, with mixed results. In RWE studies PT generally increased platelet count (PC). This increase varied by patient characteristics and hence did not always translate into a clinically significant reduction in bleeding risk. Safety concerns included infection risk, alloimmunization and refractoriness with associated cost burden. Discussion: In RCTs and RWE studies there was significant heterogeneity in study design and outcome measures. In RWE studies, patients receiving PT may have been at higher risk than those not receiving PT creating potential bias. There were limited data on humanistic and societal burden. Conclusion: Although PTs are used widely for increasing PC in TCP, it is important to understand the limitations of PTs, and to explore the use of alternative treatment options where available.
Use of platelet transfusions prior to lumbar punctures or epidural anaesthesia for the prevention of complications in people with thrombocytopenia
Estcourt L J, Malouf R, Hopewell S, Doree C, Van Veen J
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2018;4:CD011980.
BACKGROUND People with a low platelet count (thrombocytopenia) often require lumbar punctures or an epidural anaesthetic. Lumbar punctures can be diagnostic (haematological malignancies, subarachnoid haematoma, meningitis) or therapeutic (spinal anaesthetic, administration of chemotherapy). Epidural catheters are placed for administration of epidural anaesthetic. Current practice in many countries is to correct thrombocytopenia with platelet transfusions prior to lumbar punctures and epidural anaesthesia, in order to mitigate the risk of serious procedure-related bleeding. However, the platelet count threshold recommended prior to these procedures varies significantly from country to country. This indicates significant uncertainty among clinicians regarding the correct management of these patients. The risk of bleeding appears to be low, but if bleeding occurs it can be very serious (spinal haematoma). Consequently, people may be exposed to the risks of a platelet transfusion without any obvious clinical benefit.This is an update of a Cochrane Review first published in 2016. OBJECTIVES To assess the effects of different platelet transfusion thresholds prior to a lumbar puncture or epidural anaesthesia in people with thrombocytopenia (low platelet count). SEARCH METHODS We searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs), non-randomised controlled trials (nRCTs), controlled before-after studies (CBAs), interrupted time series studies (ITSs), and cohort studies in CENTRAL (the Cochrane Library 2018, Issue 1), MEDLINE (from 1946), Embase (from 1974), the Transfusion Evidence Library (from 1950), and ongoing trial databases to 13 February 2018. SELECTION CRITERIA We included RCTs, nRCTs, CBAs, ITSs, and cohort studies involving transfusions of platelet concentrates, prepared either from individual units of whole blood or by apheresis, and given to prevent bleeding in people of any age with thrombocytopenia requiring insertion of a lumbar puncture needle or epidural catheter.The original review only included RCTs. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS We used standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane for including RCTs, nRCTs, CBAs, and ITSs. Two review authors independently assessed studies for eligibility and risk of bias and extracted data. Results were only expressed narratively. MAIN RESULTS We identified no completed or ongoing RCTs, nRCTs, CBAs, or ITSs. No studies included people undergoing an epidural procedure. No studies compared different platelet count thresholds prior to a procedure.In this update we identified three retrospective cohort studies that contained participants who did and did not receive platelet transfusions prior to lumbar puncture procedures. All three studies were carried out in people with cancer, most of whom had a haematological malignancy. Two studies were in children, and one was in adults.The number of participants receiving platelet transfusions prior to the lumbar puncture procedures was not reported in one study. We therefore only summarised in a narrative form the relevant outcomes from two studies (150 participants; 129 children and 21 adults), in which the number of participants who received the transfusion was given.We judged the overall risk of bias for all reported outcomes for both studies as 'serious' based on the ROBINS-I tool.No procedure-related major bleeding occurred in the two studies that reported this outcome (2 studies, 150 participants, no cases, very low-quality evidence).There was no evidence of a difference in the risk of minor bleeding (traumatic tap) in participants who received platelet transfusions before a lumbar puncture and those who did not receive a platelet transfusion before the procedure (2 studies, 150 participants, very low-quality evidence). One of the 14 adults who received a platelet transfusion experienced minor bleeding (traumatic tap; defined as at least 500 x 10(6)/L red blood cells in the cerebrospinal fluid); none of the seven adults who did not receive a platelet transfusion experienced this event. Ten children experienced
Comparison of a therapeutic-only versus prophylactic platelet transfusion policy for people with congenital or acquired bone marrow failure disorders
Malouf R, Ashraf A, Hadjinicolaou A V, Doree C, Hopewell S, Estcourt L J
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2018;5:CD012342.
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BACKGROUND Bone marrow disorders encompass a group of diseases characterised by reduced production of red cells, white cells, and platelets, or defects in their function, or both. The most common bone marrow disorder is myelodysplastic syndrome. Thrombocytopenia, a low platelet count, commonly occurs in people with bone marrow failure. Platetet transfusions are routinely used in people with thrombocytopenia secondary to bone marrow failure disorders to treat or prevent bleeding. Myelodysplastic syndrome is currently the most common reason for receiving a platelet transfusion in some Western countries. OBJECTIVES To determine whether a therapeutic-only platelet transfusion policy (transfusion given when patient is bleeding) is as effective and safe as a prophylactic platelet transfusion policy (transfusion given to prevent bleeding according to a prespecified platelet threshold) in people with congenital or acquired bone marrow failure disorders. SEARCH METHODS We searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs), non-RCTs, and controlled before-after studies (CBAs) in the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (the Cochrane Library 2017, Issue 9), Ovid MEDLINE (from 1946), Ovid Embase (from 1974), PubMed (e-publications only), the Transfusion Evidence Library (from 1950), and ongoing trial databases to 12 October 2017. SELECTION CRITERIA We included RCTs, non-RCTs, and CBAs that involved the transfusion of platelet concentrates (prepared either from individual units of whole blood or by apheresis any dose, frequency, or transfusion trigger) and given to treat or prevent bleeding among people with congenital or acquired bone marrow failure disorders.We excluded uncontrolled studies, cross-sectional studies, and case-control studies. We excluded cluster-RCTs, non-randomised cluster trials, and CBAs with fewer than two intervention sites and two control sites due to the risk of confounding. We included all people with long-term bone marrow failure disorders that require platelet transfusions, including neonates. We excluded studies of alternatives to platelet transfusion, or studies of people receiving intensive chemotherapy or a stem cell transplant. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS We used the standard methodological procedures outlined by Cochrane. Due to the absence of evidence we were unable to report on any of the review outcomes. MAIN RESULTS We identified one RCT that met the inclusion criteria for this review. The study enrolled only nine adults with MDS over a three-year study duration period. The trial was terminated due to poor recruitment rate (planned recruitment 60 participants over two years). Assessment of the risk of bias was not possible for all domains. The trial was a single-centre, single-blind trial. The clinical and demographic characteristics of the participants were never disclosed. The trial outcomes relevant to this review were bleeding assessments, mortality, quality of life, and length of hospital stay, but no data were available to report on any of these outcomes.We identified no completed non-RCTs or CBAs.We identified no ongoing RCTs, non-RCTs, or CBAs. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS We found no evidence to determine the safety and efficacy of therapeutic platelet transfusion compared with prophylactic platelet transfusion for people with long-term bone marrow failure disorders. This review underscores the urgency of prioritising research in this area. People with bone marrow failure depend on long-term platelet transfusion support, but the only trial that assessed a therapeutic strategy was halted. There is a need for good-quality studies comparing a therapeutic platelet transfusion strategy with a prophylactic platelet transfusion strategy; such trials should include outcomes that are important to patients, such as quality of life, length of hospital admission, and risk of bleeding.
Xiangrong He, MD, PhD & Claudia S. Cohn, MD, PhD, both of University of Minnesota, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology.
What is known?
Thrombocytopenia represents a common problem for patients withchronic bone marrow failure disorders, the most common of which are myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and anaplastic anemia (AA). In addition to thrombocytopenia, both morphologic and functional platelet abnormalities may be seen in these patients as well. Platelet transfusion support is the primary management option for thrombocytopenia and active bleeding in these patients. Platelets are usually transfused prophylactically at counts less than 10 x 109/L and with higher counts in patients with hemorrhage. As compared with no prophylaxis, prophylactic platelet transfusions have been shown to be superior in reducing moderate to severe bleeding, primarily in people with leukemia. However, the evidence of prophylactic use for platelet transfusions in people with chronic bone marrow failure is lacking. Meanwhile, platelets are a precious resource and platelet transfusion carries many risks. Thus, avoiding unnecessary prophylactic platelet transfusions will have significant financial and safety implications for health services.
What did this paper set out to examine?
The authors set out to to review in thrombocytopenic patients with chronic bone marrow failure, whether prophylactic transfusions are really necessary or whether these patients can be effectively supported with only therapeutic platelet transfusions given with the onset of bleeding. In particular, they wanted to show that a therapeutic-only platelet transfusion strategy is as effective and safe as a prophylactic platelet transfusion strategy for the prevention of clinically significant bleeding in thrombocytopenic patients with primary bone marrow failure disorders.
What did they show?
The review included all patients with MDS, acquired AA, or congenital bone marrow failure disorders that were not being actively treated with a stem cell transplant or intensive chemotherapy. To maximize the number of studies eligible for inclusion, not only randomized controlled trials (RCTs), but good quality non-RCTs, and controlled before-after studies were included. Only one trial met the inclusion criteria for this review. Unfortunately, the trial was incomplete due to an unexpected slow recruiting rate. Therefore, no results were provided by the trial authors. Although the review was unable to make any recommendations on prophylactic platelet transfusion policies for this patient population, it did identify an urgent need for good quality studies in this area.
What are the implications for practice and for future work?
Thrombocytopenia (platelet counts < 10 x 109/L) is one of the most common complications in patients with chronic bone marrow failure. For example, 40% to 65% of MDS patients have thrombocytopenia. Meanwhile, in some Western countries, bone marrow failure is one of the most common underlying reasons for receiving a prophylactic platelet transfusion. However, guidelines on a therapeutic platelet transfusion strategy versus a prophylactic platelet transfusion strategy in this population are still lacking. Due to the absence of relevant data, the current review was not able to reach any conclusions on the safety and efficacy of prophylactic platelet transfusion compared with therapeutic platelet transfusion for patients with chronic bone marrow failure. Nontheless, this review identified a major gap in the literature and underscored the urgency of prioritizing research in this area. In the meantime, platelet transfusions for people with bone marrow disorders should still be managed according to national transfusion guidelines.
Alternative agents to prophylactic platelet transfusion for preventing bleeding in people with thrombocytopenia due to chronic bone marrow failure: a meta-analysis and systematic review
Desborough M, Hadjinicolaou AV, Chaimani A, Trivella M, Vyas P, Doree C, Hopewell S, Stanworth SJ, Estcourt LJ
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2016;((10)):CD012055.
People with thrombocytopenia due to bone marrow failure are vulnerable to bleeding. Platelet transfusions have limited efficacy in this setting and alternative agents that could replace, or reduce platelet transfusion, and are effective at reducing bleeding are needed. To compare the relative efficacy of different interventions for patients with thrombocytopenia due to chronic bone marrow failure and to derive a hierarchy of potential alternative treatments to platelet transfusions. We searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) in the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (the Cochrane Library 2016, Issue 3), MEDLINE (from 1946), Embase (from 1974), CINAHL (from 1937), the Transfusion Evidence Library (from 1980) and ongoing trial databases to 27 April 2016. We included randomised controlled trials in people with thrombocytopenia due to chronic bone marrow failure who were allocated to either an alternative to platelet transfusion (artificial platelet substitutes, platelet-poor plasma, fibrinogen concentrate, recombinant activated factor VII (rFVIIa), desmopressin (DDAVP), recombinant factor XIII (rFXIII), recombinant interleukin (rIL)6 or rIL11, or thrombopoietin (TPO) mimetics) or a comparator (placebo, standard of care or platelet transfusion). We excluded people undergoing intensive chemotherapy or stem cell transfusion. Two review authors independently screened search results, extracted data and assessed trial quality. We estimated summary risk ratios (RR) for dichotomous outcomes. We planned to use summary mean differences (MD) for continuous outcomes. All summary measures are presented with 95% confidence intervals (CI).We could not perform a network meta-analysis because the included studies had important differences in the baseline severity of disease for the participants and in the number of participants undergoing chemotherapy. This raised important concerns about the plausibility of the transitivity assumption in the final dataset and we could not evaluate transitivity statistically because of the small number of trials per comparison. Therefore, we could only perform direct pairwise meta-analyses of included interventions.We employed a random-effects model for all analyses. We assessed statistical heterogeneity using the I2 statistic and its 95% CI. The risk of bias of each study included was assessed using the Cochrane 'Risk of bias' tool. The quality of the evidence was assessed using GRADE methods. We identified seven completed trials (472 participants), and four ongoing trials (recruiting 837 participants) which are due to be completed by December 2020. Of the seven completed trials, five trials (456 participants) compared a TPO mimetic versus placebo (four romiplostim trials, and one eltrombopag trial), one trial (eight participants) compared DDAVP with placebo and one trial (eight participants) compared tranexamic acid with placebo. In the DDAVP trial, the only outcome reported was the bleeding time. In the tranexamic acid trial there were methodological flaws and bleeding definitions were subject to significant bias. Consequently, these trials could not be incorporated into the quantitative synthesis. No randomised trial of artificial platelet substitutes, platelet-poor plasma, fibrinogen concentrate, rFVIIa, rFXIII, rIL6 or rIL11 was identified.We assessed all five trials of TPO mimetics included in this review to be at high risk of bias because the trials were funded by the manufacturers of the TPO mimetics and the authors had financial stakes in the sponsoring companies.The GRADE quality of the evidence was very low to moderate across the different outcomes.There was insufficient evidence to detect a difference in the number of participants with at least one bleeding episode between TPO mimetics and placebo (RR 0.86, 95% CI 0.56 to 1.31, four trials, 206 participants, low-quality evidence).There was insufficient evidence to detect a difference in the risk of a life-threatening bleed between those treated with a TPO mimetic and placebo (RR 0.31, 95% CI 0.04 to 2.26, one tri
Utility of cross-matched platelet transfusions in patients with hypoproliferative thrombocytopenia: a systematic review
Vassallo RR, Fung M, Rebulla P, Duquesnoy R, Saw CL, Slichter SJ, Tanael S, Shehata N, International Collaboration for Guideline Development Implementation, Evaluation for Transfusion Therapies
BACKGROUND Multiply transfused hypoproliferative thrombocytopenic (HT) patients with alloimmune transfusion refractoriness require specially selected platelets (PLTs). Cross-matching apheresis PLTs is a popular support option, avoiding requirements for large panels of typed donors for HLA-based selection. We undertook a systematic review of the utility of various cross-matching techniques on mortality reduction, prevention of hemorrhage, alloimmunization and refractoriness, and improvement in PLT utilization or count increments. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS A systematic review to December 2012 was conducted of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane databases along with a bibliographic search of pertinent references. RESULTS Of 146 retrieved citations, 20 met inclusion criteria. Eleven more were chosen from bibliographies, describing 29 unique cohorts. All but five enrolled transfusion-refractory, predominantly alloimmunized patients. Cross-match impact on mortality and hemorrhage could not be assessed from these studies. Two studies demonstrated durable corrected count increments and/or breadth of alloimmunization throughout cross-match support; none addressed development or persistence of refractoriness. In alloimmunized refractory patients and nonrefractory cohorts with greater than 25% alloimmunization, higher increments were seen with cross-match-compatible PLTs than incompatible or un-cross-matched units. In two nonrefractory, nonalloimmunized cohorts, the lack of utility of cross-match was reflected by test sensitivity of less than 20%. Comparison of cross-matched PLT success with that of HLA-identical units revealed inferior success rates for the former in one study and equivalent rates in another. No trend was observed regarding relative utility of the various commonly employed techniques. CONCLUSION Cross-matched PLTs are useful in increasing PLT counts in alloimmunized, transfusion-refractory HT patients, but data about their impact on hemorrhage and mortality are lacking. 2013 American Association of Blood Banks.
A systematic review and survey of the management of unexpected neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia
Bassler D, Greinacher A, Okascharoen C, Klenner A, Ditomasso J, Kiefel V, Chan A, Paes B