Analysis of deep vein thrombosis in burn patients

A. M. Fecher, M. S. O'Mara, I. W. Goldfarb, H. Slater, R. Garvin, T. J. Birdas, P. F. Caushaj

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

44 Scopus citations


Objective: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) represents a major cause of morbidity in surgical patients. Controversial reports exist on the incidence of DVT in burn patients. We report our experience over a 10-year period. Methods: Patients admitted to our Burn Unit over the period 1991-2001 and diagnosed with DVT were identified. Their records were retrospectively reviewed for demographic factors, extent and severity of burn injury and outcome. Results: A total of 4102 patients were admitted to the WPH Burn unit during the study period. All patients received routine subcutaneous heparin prophylaxis. Ten patients were diagnosed with DVT (0.25%). Compared to our total burn population, these patients were older (mean age 47±22.7 years versus 35±22 years P=0.14) and had more extensive burns (mean total body surface area (TBSA) 34.7±25.3% versus 12±15.7% P=0.02). Two patients developed non-fatal pulmonary embolism (PE). There were three deaths, none due to thromboembolic disease. There were no complications from the routine administration of subcutaneous heparin. Conclusion: The incidence of DVT in our study is much less than the incidence reported in other critically ill patients and less than that of most reports on burn patients. In our experience, routine heparin prophylaxis is effective for the prevention of DVT in burn patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)591-593
Number of pages3
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 2004


  • Burn patients
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Non-fatal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

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    Fecher, A. M., O'Mara, M. S., Goldfarb, I. W., Slater, H., Garvin, R., Birdas, T. J., & Caushaj, P. F. (2004). Analysis of deep vein thrombosis in burn patients. Burns, 30(6), 591-593.