Unfractionated heparin activity measured by anti-factor xa levels is associated with the need for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation circuit/membrane oxygenator change: A retrospective pediatric study

Academic Article


  • Objective: Investigate whether anti-Factor Xa levels are associated with the need for change of circuit/membrane oxygenator secondary to thrombus formation in pediatric patients. Design and Settings: Retrospective single institution study. Patients: Retrospective record review of 62 pediatric patients supported with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation from 2009 to 2011. Interventions: Data on standard demographic characteristics, indications for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, duration of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, activated clotting time measurements, anti-Factor Xa measurements, and heparin infusion rate were collected. Generalized linear models were used to associate anti-Factor Xa concentrations and need for change of either entire circuit/membrane oxygenator secondary to thrombus formation. Measurements and Main Results: Sixty-two patients met study inclusion criteria. No-circuit change was required in 45 of 62 patients. Of 62 patients, 17 required change of circuit/membrane oxygenator due to thrombus formation. Multivariate analysis of daily anti-Factor Xa measurements throughout duration of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support estimated a mean anti-Factor Xa concentration of 0.20 IU/mL (95% CI, 0.16, 0.24) in no-complete-circuit group that was significantly higher than the estimated concentration of 0.13 IU/mL (95% CI, 0.12, 0.14) in complete-circuit group (p = 0.001). A 0.01 IU/mL decrease in anti-Factor Xa increased odds of need for circuit/membrane oxygenator change by 5% (odds ratio = 1.105; 95% CI, 1.00, 1.10; p = 0.044). Based on the observed anti-Factor Xa concentrations, complete-circuit group had 41% increased odds for requiring circuit/membrane oxygenator change compared with no-complete-circuit group (odds ratio = 1.41; 95% CI, 1.01, 1.96; p = 0.044). Mean daily activated clotting time measurement (p = 0.192) was not different between groups, but mean daily heparin infusion rate (p < 0.001) was significantly different between the two groups. Conclusions: Higher anti-Factor Xa concentrations were associated with freedom from circuit/membrane oxygenator change due to thrombus formation in pediatric patients during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support. Activated clotting time measurements did not differ significantly between groups with or without circuit/membrane oxygenator change. This is the first study to link anti-Factor Xa concentrations with a clinically relevant measure of thrombosis in pediatric patients during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support. Further prospective study is warranted. Copyright © 2014 by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies.
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    Author List

  • Irby K; Swearingen C; Byrnes J; Bryant J; Prodhan P; Fiser R
  • Volume

  • 15
  • Issue

  • 4