Do anticoagulant and antiplatelet agents prevent acute graft thrombosis in renal transplantation? A meta-analysis of case series studies

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Introduction & Objectives: Thrombosis of the renal allograft is expected to occur in 1–6% of kidney transplants, and graft loss is expected in almost all cases. Anticoagulant and anti-platelet agents could serve as an adjunctive preventive measure, but sound evidence of benefits are still lacking, in this setting. We therefore assessed the efficacy and safety of anticoagulant and anti-platelet agents, in reducing the rate of renal allograft thrombosis. Methods: A review of the literature was carried out in major databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE and LILACS), with a comprehensive search strategy, to locate all available case series studies of anticoagulant and/or anti-platelet prophylaxis of thrombosis in renal transplantation. The date of the last search was 11 August 2014. We pooled all case series in a proportional meta-analysis. Statistical significance was achieved if the 95% confidence intervals obtained for each intervention did not overlap. Results: Our search strategy retrieved 7160 titles, from which 21 case series were chosen for analysis. A total of 3246 patients were identified (1718 treated with antiplatelet and/or anticoagulant agents, and 1528 non-treated control subjects). Allograft thrombosis occurred in 7.24% (95% CI 3.45 to 12.27%) of the patients receiving no intervention, compared to 3.38% (95% CI 1.45 to 6.1%), 1.2% (95% CI 0.6 to 2.1%) and 0.47% (95% CI 0.001 to 1.79%), in the anticoagulant, aspirin, and aspirin + anticoagulant groups, respectively. Bleeding complication rates were 28.0% (95% CI 15.4 to 42.7%) for anticoagulants, compared to 12.13% (95% CI 0.8 to 33.93%) for aspirin + anticoagulant, 0.31% (95% CI 0.0001 to 1.32%) for aspirin, and 6.1% (95% CI 2.2 to 11.7%) for the control group. Conclusions: Aspirin is more effective in reducing allograft thrombosis, after kidney transplantation, whether alone or in association with an anticoagulant, when compared to no drug prophylaxis, and without higher haemorrhagic complication rates. Anticoagulants, when used alone, do not show a beneficial effect on thrombosis rates, additionally yielding higher bleeding rates.





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Bju International. Hoboken: Wiley-blackwell, v. 115, p. 19-20, 2015.

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