Consider The Evidence: Med/Peds Journal Roundup

March 14, 2006

Flight Risk: Air Travel and DVT

Filed under: lancet, VTE — medblog @ 5:43 pm

Lancet 3/11 – Shreijer et al present an interesting discovery about the increased risk of venous thrombosis during airplane travel. They wondered whether in addition to immobilization as a risk factor, passengers were also prone to hypercoagualibility during flight.

In the crossover controlled study, 71 subjects were tested during 8 hours in flight, 8 hours seated while watching movies, and during 8 hours of daily activities. Several markers of coagulation including Thrombin-Antithrombin complex (TAT), D-dimer, and prothrombin fragment 1 and 2 were measured before and after the the test conditions.

The researchers found that the levels of TAT, D-dimer, and the combination of the three factors were significantly increased after the flight in comparison to the other situations. They conclude that there are other mechanisms beyond immobilization to account for the 2 to 4 fold increased risk of DVT during flight. Whether this is related to pressure, oxygen content, or something else, will requre further research.

    Activation of coagulation system during air travel: a crossover study.
    The Lancet, Volume 367, Issue 9513, Pages 832-838
    A. Schreijer, S. Cannegieter, J. Meijers, S. Middeldorp, H. Büller, F. Rosendaal

1 Comment »

  1. hi, hi, hi! Beautiful site.

    Comment by Petro — July 9, 2007 @ 2:23 am

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