A change in anticoagulation monitoring improves safety, reduces transfusion, and reduces costs in infants on cardiopulmonary bypass

Kelly A. Machovec, Edmund H. Jooste, Richard J. Walczak, Hercilia Mayumi Homi, Robert D.B. Jaquiss, Andrew J. Lodge, Warwick A. Ames

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Background An immature coagulation system coupled with the hypothermia and hemodilution associated with cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) in infants makes the activated clotting time (ACT) an ineffective monitor for anticoagulation in this population. The Medtronic HMS Plus Hemostasis Management System (HMS; Medtronic, Inc., Minneapolis, MN, USA) is shown to decrease thrombin generation and blood product requirements. Aim We conducted a quality improvement initiative to test our hypothesis that the use of HMS results in reduced incidence of subtherapeutic ACT values, blood product usage, and operating room time for infants undergoing cardiac surgery. Methods Fifty consecutive patients weighing <10 kg having cardiac surgery requiring CPB had anticoagulation managed by the HMS. Data were compared to that of 50 consecutive patients weighing <10 kg having cardiac surgery who had their anticoagulation monitored by the ACT alone. Comparisons between categorical variables were performed with chi-square tests. Comparisons between continuous variables were performed with the Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Statistical significance was defined as two-tailed P value < 0.05. Results The HMS group had a 61% decrease in incidence of ACT values <480 s and elimination of ACT values < 400 s at any time on bypass. The HMS group received fewer blood products and spent fewer minutes in the operating room after protamine administration, translating to fewer donor exposures and a savings of 403 in transfusion costs and 440 in operating room time costs. Conclusion Our findings highlight the benefits of individualized heparinization for pediatric patients undergoing CPB with a monitored heparinization system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)580-586
Number of pages7
JournalPaediatric Anaesthesia
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015



  • anticoagulation/blood
  • blood component transfusion
  • cardiac surgical procedures
  • cardiopulmonary bypass
  • heparin
  • quality improvement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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