Author Interviews, BMJ, Endocrinology, Heart Disease, Hormone Therapy, Menopause, Thromboembolism / 11.01.2019 Interview with: Yana Vinogradova, PhD Research Fellow Department of Primary Care School of Medicine University of Nottingham University Park, Nottingham What is the background for this study?   Response: The study targeted middle age women going through menopause.  This is the stage of life when women naturally reach the end of their reproductive life and their hormones gradually decrease.  Some women experience unpleasant effects such as hot flushes, night sweats, mood swings, memory and concentration loss, headaches.  Quality of life may be severely affected.  Hormone replacement therapy uses a class of drugs, which, like all drugs, have side effects.   VTE is a serious side effect which can have a lethal outcome. There are different preparations of hormones available for such women.  Some of them were extensively studied in a large American Trial Women’s Health Initiative and showed the risk of VTE to be twice as high for women who took them.  However, these well-studied drugs are mostly prescribed in America.  The more popular drugs in Europe and the UK have been much less studied, so it was unclear how they compared.  (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Genetic Research / 11.09.2017 Interview with: Bengt Zöller, MD, PhD Associate professor in Internal Medicine Specialist Physician in Clinical Chemistry Specialist Physician in Family Medicine Lund University/ Region Skåne Center for Primary Health Care Research University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden What is the background for this study? Response: Previous studies have suggested an association between height and venous thromboembolism but association might be confounded. We therefore permed a Nationwide study including a cohort of siblings -a co sibling analysis to adjust for familial confounders (genetic and shared familial environmental factors). (more…)
Author Interviews, Clots - Coagulation, Electronic Records, JAMA, NYU, Surgical Research / 23.03.2017 Interview with: Zachary Borabm, Research fellow Hansjörg Wyss Department of Plastic Surgery NYU Langone Medical Center What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Recent studies have shown that health care providers perform poorly in risk stratifying their patients for venous thromboembolism (VTE) which leads to inadequate VTE prophylaxis delivery, especially in surgical patients. Computerized Clinical Decision Support Systems (CCDSSs) are programs integrated into an electronic health record that have the power to aid health care providers. Using a meta-analysis study technique we were able to pool data from 11 studies, including 156,366 patients that either had CCDSSs intervention or routine care without CCDSSs. Our main outcome measures were the rate of prophylaxis for VTE and the rate of actual VTE events. We found that CCDSSs increased the rate of VTE prophylaxis (odds ratio 2.35, p<0.001) and decreased the risk of VTE events (risk ratio 0.78, p<0.001). (more…)
Author Interviews, Lancet, Lipids, Thromboembolism / 21.01.2017 Interview with: Setor Kunutsor BSc MD MPhil(cantab) PhD(cantab) Research Fellow/Epidemiologist Musculoskeletal Research Unit University of Bristol School of Clinical Sciences Southmead Hospital What is the background for this study? Response: Statins are well established for the prevention of cardiovascular disease and this is based on their ability to lower levels of circulating lipids in the blood. However, statins are also known to have pleotropic effects and these include potential protective effects on multiple disease conditions. Based on their anti-inflammatory and antithrombotic properties, there have been suggestions that statins may prevent venous thromboembolism (VTE) (which comprises of pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis). The evidence is however uncertain. Several studies utilizing both observational cohort and randomized controlled designs have been conducted to evaluate whether statin therapy or use is associated with a reduction in the incidence of VTE, but the results have been inconclusive. In a recent review that was published in 2012, Rahimi and colleagues pooled the results of several randomized controlled trials (RCTs), but found no significant reduction in the risk of VTE with statin therapy [REF]. Given the publication of new studies since this study was published and the existing uncertain evidence on the effect of statins on VTE, we decided it was time to bring all the evidence together and evaluate if statin therapy really did have a protective effect on the risk of venous thromboembolism. (more…)
Author Interviews, Kaiser Permanente, Thromboembolism / 29.05.2015 Interview with: Nathan Clark, PharmD Clinical pharmacy supervisor, anticoagulation and anemia management services and Thomas Delate, PhD Clinical research scientist Kaiser Permanente Colorado MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Patients with a history of blood clots are commonly prescribed warfarin, an anticoagulant, to decrease the body’s ability to form additional clots. Clinicians typically stop the use of warfarin in patients to reduce the risk of serious bleeding when invasive procedures, such as colonoscopy or orthopedic surgery are scheduled. However, when warfarin interruptions occur, patients are exposed to an increased risk of blood clots three to five days before and five or more days after invasive procedures. Bridge therapy with another, faster acting anticoagulant is often initiated in an attempt to reduce the patients’ risk for developing blood clots during that gap. Bridging has been a part of standard therapy for venous thromboembolism (VTE) patients undergoing invasive procedures for many years. But only limited data outlining the rates of bleeding and VTE recurrence were available to help clinicians analyze the risks and benefits of bridge therapy. We examined the electronic medical records of 1,178 patients with VTE who underwent 1,812 invasive diagnostic or surgical procedures between January 2006 and March 2012 that required the interruption of warfarin therapy. Study patients were categorized into three groups based on their annual risk of VTE recurrence without anticoagulant therapy. Within those groups, a total of 555 patients – 28.7 percent of low-risk, 33.6 percent of moderate-risk and 63.2 percent of high-risk patients – received bridging anticoagulant therapy. The 1,257 patients who did not receive bridge therapy interrupted their warfarin use and received no other anticoagulants during the perioperative period. The use of bridge therapy resulted in a 17-fold higher risk of bleeding without a significant difference in the rate of blood clot formation compared to patients who didn’t receive bridge therapy. In addition, there were no significant differences in the rates of blood clot occurrence or death between the bridged and non-bridged patient groups. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Clots, BMJ / 24.11.2013 Interview with: Alyshah Abdul Sultan, doctorate student Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, Clinical Sciences Building Phase 2, City Hospital, Nottingham NG5 1PB, UK What are the main findings of the study? Answer: Overall, we found that hospitalisation during pregnancy was associated with an excess risk of 16.6 cases per 1,000 person-years compared with time outside hospital (17.5-fold increase in risk). There was also an excess risk of 5.8 cases per 1,000 person years in the 28 days after discharge with VTE events more likely to occur in the third trimester of pregnancy and in women aged 35 years and over. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Clots, JAMA / 13.10.2013

Mila Ju, MD Resident, Division of Vascular Surgery Northwestern University 676 N. Saint Clair St., Ste 650 Chicago, IL Interview with: Mila Ju, MD Resident, Division of Vascular Surgery Northwestern University 676 N. Saint Clair St., Ste 650 Chicago, IL  60611 What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Ju: By using combined data from Hospital Compare, American Hospital Association, and Medicare claims databases, we found that better hospital venous thromboembolism (VTE) prophylaxis adherence rates were weakly associated with worse risk-adjusted VTE event rates. Moreover, hospitals with higher intensity of detecting VTE with imaging studies (such as venous duplex, chest computer tomography, etc.) had more VTE events (13.5 in highest VTE imaging quartile vs 5.0 in lowest VTE imaging quartile) per 1000 discharges. Our study suggests that VTE rates might be influenced by surveillance bias and not reflecting the true quality of care provided by the hospitals. (more…)