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Rates of pharmacologic venous thromboembolism prophylaxis in hospitalized patients with active ulcerative colitis: results from a tertiary care center.

BACKGROUND: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients are at increased risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE) compared to the general population. Practice guidelines recommend pharmacologic prophylaxis for IBD inpatients.

AIM: Our aim was to determine the rates of pharmacologic VTE prophylaxis in ulcerative colitis (UC) inpatients at a tertiary referral center. We also assessed potential predictors of pharmacologic prophylaxis.

METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 377 UC patients between January 1st, 2007 and December 31st, 2011. The medical record of each patient was examined to determine whether pharmacologic VTE prophylaxis was ordered and administered. We conducted multiple logistic regression to determine predictors of pharmacologic prophylaxis.

RESULTS: The overall VTE pharmacologic prophylaxis rate was 67.6%. The rate of patients admitted to the medical service was 57.4% compared to 93.5% for those admitted to surgery. In medical patients who received pharmacologic VTE prophylaxis, 34.0% of ordered doses were not given compared to 17.4% of doses in surgical patients (P<0.001). In the multiple logistic regression analysis, having an additional VTE risk factor (OR 2.46, 95% CI 1.41-4.30), extensive colitis (OR 2.26, 95% CI 1.32-3.87) or being admitted to a surgical service (OR 12.03, 95% CI 5.29-27.38) was associated with VTE pharmacologic prophylaxis.

CONCLUSIONS: A substantial proportion of medical patients admitted with UC were not ordered for VTE pharmacologic prophylaxis despite current guidelines. Even in patients who were ordered for pharmacologic prophylaxis, one third of doses were not given. Inappropriate prophylaxis may lead to unnecessary morbidity and mortality.

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