Evaluation of deep vein thrombosis prophylaxis in a general hospital

Abstract Background Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a cause for growing concern in hospitals, has great impact on morbidity and mortality in clinical and surgical patients, and is the leading cause of preventable hospital deaths. Although there are risk assessment models for hospital inpatients, prophylaxis is still underused or is administered incorrectly. Objectives To assess the risk profile for VTE in recently hospitalized clinical and surgical patients and evaluate the thromboprophylactic measures implemented in the first 24 hours of hospitalization. Methods Cross-sectional study conducted in a large general hospital in the state of São Paulo, Brazil, between March and July 2015. Padua and Caprini scores were used for risk stratification of clinical and surgical patients, respectively, while thromboprophylactic measures were analyzed for compliance with the recommendations contained in the 8th and 9th Consensus of the American College of Chest Physicians. Results A total of 592 patients (62% clinical and 38% surgical) were assessed. Risk stratification revealed a need for chemoprophylaxis in 42% of clinical patients and 81% of surgical patients (51% high risk and 30% moderate risk). However, 54% of high-risk clinical patients, 85% of high-risk surgical patients, and 4% of moderate-risk surgical patients, who were free from contraindications, were actually given the correct prophylaxis in the first 24 hours of hospitalization. Conclusions There is a need to improve patient safety in relation to VTE in the first hours of hospitalization, since there is underutilization of chemoprophylaxis, especially in high-risk clinical patients and moderate-risk surgical patients.