Pharmacological Prophylaxis of Venous Thromboembolism in Terminally Ill Patients: A Need or Futility?

Laura Serranito, Paulo Reis-Pina

Abstract


The aim of this case is to clarify the need to maintain the terminally ill oncological patients who have had a thrombotic event in the course of their underlying disease under antithrombotic therapy. This case addresses a 63-year-old man with stage IV gastric antrum adenocarcinoma, completely bed-ridden and anticoagulated with subcutaneous enoxaparin for more than a year, following deep venous thrombosis of the left lower limb. After reviewing the literature, it was found that, for end-of-life patients, anticoagulation seems to have little benefit as the main objective is not the extension of life itself, but rather the preservation of the best quality of life through practices that are well established in the relief of suffering.


Keywords


Anticoagulants/therapeutic use; Enoxaparin; Fibrinolytic Agents; Palliative Care; Venous Thromboembolism/prevention & control

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