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Influence of the sample anticoagulant on the measurements of impedance aggregometry in cardiac surgery

Authors Solomon C, Winterhalter M, Gilde I, Hoy L, Calatzis A, Rahe-Meyer N

Published 9 October 2008 Volume 2008:1 Pages 23—30


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Cristina Solomon1, Michael Winterhalter1, Isabel Gilde1, Ludwig Hoy2, Andreas Calatzis3, Niels Rahe-Meyer1

1Department of Anesthesiology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany; 2Institute for Biometry, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany; 3Department Hemostasis Transfusion Medicine, University Hospital Munich, Munich, Germany

Background: The standard method of assessment of platelet function is represented by light transmission aggregometry (LTA), performed in citrated platelet-rich plasma (PRP). With LTA, decrease and subsequent post-cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) recovery of platelet function have been reported during cardiac surgery. Multiple electrode aggregometry (MEA) may be used as point-of-care method to monitor perioperative changes in platelet function. Since MEA assesses macroaggregation which is influenced by the plasmatic levels of unbound calcium, citrate may be inadequate as anticoagulant for MEA. We used citrate and heparin for MEA samples, to see with which anticoagulant the intraoperative decrease and postoperative recovery in platelet function previously described with other aggregometric methods in cardiac surgery may be observed with MEA.

Methods: Blood was obtained from 60 patients undergoing routine cardiac surgery and the samples were collected in standard tubes containing unfractionated heparin (50 U/mL) or trisodium citrate (3.2%). The samples were obtained before CPB, at 30 minutes on CPB, end of CPB and on the first postoperative day. MEA was performed using the Multiplate® analyzer. Collagen (COLtest, 100 μg/mL) and TRAP-6 (thrombin receptor activating peptide, TRAPtest, 1mM/mL) were used as aggregation agonists.

Results: Platelet aggregometric response decreased significantly during CPB. Platelet aggregation assessed using TRAP-6 as agonist on heparinized blood significantly correlated with the duration of CPB (r = −0.41, p = 0.001, 2-tailed Pearson test). The aggregometric analysis performed on the first postoperative day showed a significant recovery in platelet activity in the samples containing heparin (increase from 30 ± 22 U to 46 ± 27 U for the COLtest and from 70 ± 34 U to 95 ± 32 U for the TRAPtest, p < 0.001, Student’s t-test), while no significant recovery of platelet function could be established in the MEA measurements performed with citrated blood.

Conclusions: The choice of blood sample anticoagulant used for impedance aggregometry influenced the platelet aggregation response. Postoperative platelet function recovery was only detected in the heparinized samples. Heparin seems to be better suited than citrate for the analysis of impedance aggregometry in heart surgery.

Keywords: cardiac surgery, impedance aggregometry, platelet recovery, sample anticoagulant



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