Intraoperative use of recombinant activated factor VII during complex aortic surgery

Deniz Goksedef, Georgia Panagopoulos, Naiem Nassiri, Randy L. Levine, Panagiotis G. Hountis, Konstadinos A. Plestis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Objective: Postoperative bleeding is a major cause of morbidity and mortality after complex aortic surgery. Intraoperative coagulopathy is a well-known culprit in this process. Recombinant activated factor VII is increasingly used for the postoperative management of such bleeding. We report our experience with the intraoperative use of this agent. Methods: We performed a propensity-matched analysis on 376 retrospectively identified patients who underwent aortic root, arch, or ascending aortic replacement surgeries from 1999 to 2010. We matched a total of 58 patients: recombinant activated factor VII-treated group (n = 29) and nonrecombinant activated factor VII-treated group (n = 29). We compared the matched patients on re-exploration, mortality, bleeding-related events, use of blood and blood products, length of intensive care unit stay, duration of hospitalization, and thrombotic complications. Results: Propensity-matched patients had similar preoperative and intraoperative characteristics. The mean dose of recombinant activated factor VII group was 23 ± 12 μg/kg. We found significantly lower rates of surgical re-exploration (P = .004), fewer prolonged intubations (P = .004), less total chest tube output (P = .01), and fewer units of packed red blood cells (P = .01) and fresh-frozen plasma (P = .04) transfused postoperatively in the recombinant activated factor VII group. There was no significant difference in mortality (P = 1), duration of intensive care unit stay (P = .44) or hospital stay (P = .32), or thrombotic complications between the groups (P = .5). Conclusions: We recommend the intraoperative administration of low-dose recombinant activated factor VII but limited to the management of persistent, nonsurgical, mediastinal bleeding in aortic surgery. Further prospective randomized studies and larger cohorts are needed to verify these findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1198-1204
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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