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Groene, Philipp; Butte, Jennifer; Thaler, Sarah; Görlinger, Klaus and Schäfer, Simon T. (21. July 2022): Modified thromboelastometric tests provide improved sensitivity and specificity to direct oral anticoagulants compared to standard thromboelastometric tests in-vitro. In: Thrombosis Journal, Vol. 20 [PDF, 910kB]


Background The detection of direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) is still challenging but important in emergency patients. We recently demonstrated that modified thromboelastometry can detect rivaroxaban and dabigatran. Data on the detection rates of modified compared to standard thromboelastometric tests of apixaban and edoxaban, are missing. The aim of this in-vitro dose-effect-study was to add data on these DOACs and to evaluate thromboelastometric tests in-vitro using data of both studies.

Methods The study was approved by the Ludwig-Maximilians-University ethics committee (No 17-525-2). Written informed consent was obtained from all individuals. Blood samples of healthy volunteers and samples of 10 volunteers for each DOAC were used. Blood samples were spiked with six different concentrations of edoxaban and apixaban (0ng/ml; 31.25ng/ml; 62.5ng/ml; 125ng/ml; 250 ng/ml; 500ng/ml). Modified tests (low-tissue-factor test TFTEM and ecarin-based test ECATEM) as well as standard tests (e.g. FIBTEM) analyzing extrinsic pathway of coagulation were used. Receiver operating characteristics analyzes were performed as well as regression analyzes.

Results TFTEM CT correlated well with anti-Xa levels of apixaban and edoxaban (apixaban: r 2 = 0.8064 p < 0.0001; edoxaban: r 2 = 0.8603; p < 0.0001). The detection of direct FXa inhibitors (> 30 ng/mL) was successful with FIBTEM CT with a sensitivity and specificity of 81% and 90%, respectively. As expected, ECATEM CT was not prolonged by direct FXa-inhibitors due to its specificity for direct thrombin inhibitors. Again, TFTEM CT provided the highest sensitivity and specificity for the detection of direct FXa inhibitors with 96% and 95%, respectively. ECATEM test showed 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity for the detection of dabigatran.

Conclusions Our study presents modified thromboelastometric tests with improved detection of even low DOAC concentrations > 30 ng/mL, including apixaban in-vitro. The study thus complements the previously published data on dabigatran and rivaroxaban. Validation studies must confirm the results due to the explanatory design of this study.

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