Incidence of Recurrent Venous Thromboembolism After Treatment w/ Vitamin K Antagonists in Relation to Time Since First Event
This one is kind of an important one for me because I’ve had numerous patients in my office who have been on blood thinners for years for an isolated event many, many years ago. Basically, there doctors where afraid to take them off of the blood thinners for fear of recurrence. I remember a recent patient that had a clot in the femoral artery probably 10 years prior and had been on thinners since, with getting his blood checked every two weeks and the works. Fine and dandy, right? No future risk of stroke, right? This patient has Parkinson’s that was progressing. High dose vitamin E and ginko may protect against progression but these are no-nos with blood thinners (or so the “standard of care” would have us believe). This patient needed to have a serious heart-to-heart with his PCP and decide on his options. This study finds that after 9 months, risk from a one-time incident is negligent and blood thinners may no longer be needed.
Arch Intern Med — Abstracts: van Dongen et al. 163 (11): 1285