Heparin-induced decrease in circulating antithrombin-III.


Journal Article

Plasma-antithrombin-III (AT-III) concentrations were measured throughout therapy in 24 patients receiving continuous intravenous heparin infusion and in 2 patients treated with repeated intravenous heparin injections. In all patients, including 1 with congenital AT-III deficiency, heparin therapy was associated with a considerable progressive reduction in AT-III-binding capacity and antigenic protein. The net individual decrease in plasma-AT-III was 0-31 +/- 0-05 units/ml (normal plasma-AT-III was 1-00 units/ml) or 9-5 +/- 2-0 mg/dl and the decrease was independent of initial concentration. Plasma-AT-III returned to normal two to three days after heparin was stopped. There was no decrease in plasma-AT-III after a single dose of intravenous heparin. When present in blood for long periods heparin significantly reduced AT-III, the proteinase inhibitor that is responsible for the anticoagulant effect of this drug. The finding is very relevant to the interpretation of clinical data in patients treated with heparin and suggests that AT-III depletion may underly the thromboembolic complications sometimes encountered during heparin therapy.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Marciniak, E; Gockerman, JP

Published Date

  • September 17, 1977

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 2 / 8038

Start / End Page

  • 581 - 584

PubMed ID

  • 71399

Pubmed Central ID

  • 71399

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0140-6736

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/s0140-6736(77)91429-5


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England