Unfractionated heparin has been a near universal anticoagulant for cardiac surgery; however it is contraindicated in heparin-induced thrombocytopenia type II. Alternative anticoagulants such as bivalirudin (a direct thrombin inhibitor) are being utilized. Bivalirudin was successfully used in an immunologically complex patient (diagnoses of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia type II, systemic lupus erythematosus, antiphospholipid syndrome, and dialysis-dependent renal failure) requiring cardiopulmonary bypass. Thrombotic events are common in antiphospholipid syndrome patients undergoing cardiac surgery utilizing high-dose heparin. This may represent unrecognized heparin-induced thrombocytopenia type II. Our patient did not experience perioperative thrombotic or bleeding complications. The possible cross-reactivity between heparin induced thrombocytopenia type II and antiphospholipid syndrome has not been investigated.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine