Use of Fondaparinux Off-Label or Approved Anticoagulants for Management of Heparin-Induced Thrombocytopenia.

Schindewolf, Marc; Steindl, Julia; Beyer-Westendorf, Jan; Schellong, Sebastian; Dohmen, Pascal Maria; Brachmann, Johannes; Madlener, Katharina; Pötzsch, Bernd; Klamroth, Robert; Hankowitz, Johannes; Banik, Norbert; Eberle, Sonja; Müller, Markus Michael; Kropff, Stefan; Lindhoff-Last, Edelgard (2017). Use of Fondaparinux Off-Label or Approved Anticoagulants for Management of Heparin-Induced Thrombocytopenia. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 70(21), pp. 2636-2648. Elsevier 10.1016/j.jacc.2017.09.1099

[img] Text
1-s2.0-S073510971741000X-main.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to registered users only
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (568kB) | Request a copy


Life-threatening heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is treated with the alternative nonheparin anticoagulants argatroban, lepirudin, or danaparoid. Frequently, the pentasaccharide fondaparinux is used off-label.


The authors sought to investigate the safety and efficacy of the different anticoagulants for treating HIT.


In a national, multicenter registry study, hospitalized patients who were diagnosed with HIT, an at least intermediate clinical HIT-risk (4Ts score ≥4 points), and received treatment with ≥1 dose of the aforementioned anticoagulants were included. Main outcome measures were the incidences of HIT-specific complications (thromboembolic venous/arterial events, amputations, recurrent/persistent thrombocytopenia, skin lesions) and bleedings.


Of 195 patients, 46 (23.6%), 4 (2.1%), 61 (31.3%), and 84 (43.1%) had been treated first-line with argatroban, lepirudin, danaparoid, and fondaparinux, respectively. The composite endpoint of HIT-specific complications (thromboembolic events, amputation, skin necrosis) occurred in 11.7% of patients treated with approved alternative anticoagulation and in 0.0% of fondaparinux-treated patients. The all-cause in-hospital mortality rates were 14.4% during approved alternative anticoagulation and 0.0% during fondaparinux treatment. Bleeding complications occurred in alternatively anticoagulated patients and in fondaparinux-treated patients in 6.3% and 4.8%, respectively. Post hoc analysis of clinical and laboratory features confirmed "true" HIT in at least 74 of 195 (38.0%) patients; 35 of 74 (47.3%) were treated with fondaparinux.


Fondaparinux is effective and safe in suspected acute HIT; no HIT-specific complications occurred in the fondaparinux-treated patients, even among those with a high clinical HIT probability. Further data from randomized controlled trials are urgently needed because lepirudin was recalled from the market; danaparoid access has been limited and is not approved in the United States; and argatroban is contraindicated in patients with impaired liver function, and activated partial thromboplastin time confounding may interfere with monitoring. (Retrospective Registry of Patients With Acute Heparin-induced Thrombocytopenia Type II; NCT01304238).

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Cardiovascular Disorders (DHGE) > Clinic of Angiology

UniBE Contributor:

Schindewolf, Marc


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Catherine Gut

Date Deposited:

05 Mar 2018 15:32

Last Modified:

24 Oct 2019 17:29

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

argatroban danaparoid fondaparinux heparin heparin-induced thrombocytopenia lepirudin




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback