Introduction: Despite the existence of evidence-based guidelines for venous thromboembolism (VTE) prevention, prophylaxis is often inappropriately prescribed. This study compared the efficacy, safety, and cost of appropriate (ACCP-recommended) prophylaxis with partial prophylaxis (not completely conforming to ACCP guidelines) in patients at-risk of VTE receiving enoxaparin or unfractionated heparin.
Methods: The MarketScan((R)) Hospital Drug Database from Thomson Reuters (January 2004-March 2007), was queried for medical and surgical patients at high risk of VTE, aged > or =40years, and with a hospital stay > or =6days. Univariate and multivariate analyses compared hospital-acquired VTE events, adverse events, and hospital costs between appropriate or partial prophylaxis discharges.
Results: Of the 21,001 discharge records included, appropriate prophylaxis was received by 5136 (24.5%) patients. Compared with partial prophylaxis, appropriate prophylaxis was associated with significantly lower incidences of hospital-acquired pulmonary embolism (0.9% vs 0.5%; adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0.55, 95% confidence intervals [CI] 0.35-0.87, P=0.010), and bleeding events (10.7% vs 5.1%; adjusted OR 0.57, 95% CI 0.50-0.66, P<0.001). Total costs per discharge were lower for appropriate prophylaxis ($17,386+/-12,004) than partial prophylaxis ($23,823+/-19,783) with an adjusted mean difference of $6370 in favor of appropriate prophylaxis (P<0.001).
Conclusion: This retrospective study suggests that ACCP-guideline recommended appropriate prophylaxis reduces hospital-acquired pulmonary embolism and bleeding events in patients at-risk of VTE and is cost-saving when total direct medical costs are considered. The substantial US clinical and economic VTE burden may, therefore, be reduced by improving prophylaxis adherence with guideline recommendations.
Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.