Risk Factors for Venous Thromboembolism in Children Undergoing Orthopedic Surgery

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Orthopedics. 2021 Dec 2:1-7. doi: 10.3928/01477447-20211124-06. Online ahead of print.


Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is an uncommon but highly morbid and potentially preventable complication in children. This study aimed to characterize the incidence of, and risk factors for, VTE in children undergoing orthopedic surgery. A retrospective analysis was performed using the 2012 to 2017 American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program Pediatric (NSQIP-P) database. Patient demographics, comorbidities, operative variables, and perioperative outcomes were compared between patients who did and did not develop a VTE. In total, 81,490 pediatric patients who underwent orthopedic surgery were identified. Of those, the mean±SD age was 9.7±4.8 years, and 50.1% were male. Sixty patients (0.07%) developed a postoperative VTE. On multivariate regression, demographic and surgical variables associated with a VTE were ages 16 to 18 years (P=.002; compared with ages 11 to 15 years), American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) classes III and V (P=.003; compared with ASA classes I and II), preoperative blood transfusion (P<.001), arthrotomy (P<.001), and femur fracture (P<.001). Postoperative adverse events occurring prior to a VTE were also assessed. Controlling for patient factors, independent risk factors for VTE included any adverse event (P<.001), major adverse events (P<.001), minor adverse events (P<.001), reoperation (P<.001), and readmission (P<.001). This study identified an incidence of VTE of 0.07% in a population of more than 80,000 children undergoing orthopedic surgery. The identification of risk factors for VTE in this patient population raises the issue of VTE prophylaxis for select high-risk subpopulations. [Orthopedics. 202x;xx(x):xx-xx.].

PMID:34846239 | DOI:10.3928/01477447-20211124-06