Objective: To determine differences between dalteparin and enoxaparin in patients with spinal cord injury.
Design: This prospective, randomized, open-label study was performed as a multiple hospital trial in a large urban setting. A total of 100 patients with acute (<3 mo) spinal cord injury were recruited. A total of 95 patients met all inclusion criteria. Fifty received enoxaparin, and 45 received dalteparin. Main outcome measures included deep venous thrombosis, bleeding, compliance, Short Form-12 Health Status Survey, satisfaction, and medication/labor costs. Patients were randomized to receive 30 mg of enoxaparin subcutaneously every 12 hr or 5000 IU of dalteparin subcutaneously once daily. Prophylaxis was continued for 3 mo for motor-complete and 2 mo for motor-incomplete patients.
Results: Six percent of the patients developed deep venous thrombosis while receiving enoxaparin and 4% while receiving dalteparin (chi2 = 0.44, df = 1, P = 0.51). Four percent developed bleeding while receiving dalteparin and 2% while receiving enoxaparin (chi2 = 0.13, df = 1, P = 0.72). No differences were noted in compliance, health status, or most of the satisfaction measures. It was, however, noted that after being discharged home, the patients receiving enoxaparin rated the shots significantly more inconvenient (two injections per day) compared with taking three pills per day, than those receiving dalteparin (one injection per day, P < 0.05). The cost of the medication was 1101 US dollars/mo for enoxaparin (two injections per day) and 750 US dollars/mo for dalteparin (one injection per day).
Conclusion: Similar compliance, health status, deep venous thrombosis, and bleeding rates were found between dalteparin and enoxaparin.