Routine coagulation testing in intensive care

Steven Musca, Shilpa Desai, Brigit Roberts, Timothy Paterson, Matthew Anstey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To test a simple clinical guideline to reduce unnecessary routine testing of coagulation status.

DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A prospective, unblinded, observational study of coagulation testing frequency before and after introduction of a simple clinical guideline. We included 253 patients admitted to a tertiary intensive care unit: 100 patients consecutively enrolled before our intervention (May - July 2015) and 153 patients consecutively enrolled after our intervention (August - September 2015).

INTERVENTION: We introduced a clinical guideline and educational program in the ICU from 18 August 2015.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The number of coagulation tests performed per patient bed-day, and the associated pathology costs.

RESULTS: Over the 3-month sample period, 999 coagulation profiles were performed for 253 patients: 720 (72%) in 100 patients before, and 279 (28%) in 153 patients after our intervention. The testing frequency fell from 1.12 to 0.41 per patient bed-day (P < 0.001). A total of 463 pre-intervention coagulation profiles (64%) were classified as unnecessary, and the cost of all coagulation tests fell by 60.5% per bedday after the intervention.

CONCLUSION: A simple clinical guideline and educational package reduced unnecessary coagulation tests and costs in a tertiary referral ICU.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-217
Number of pages5
JournalCritical Care and Resuscitation
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2016
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Routine coagulation testing in intensive care'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this