Utilization of Oral Anticoagulation in a Teaching Hospital in Nigeria

Author(s): Anakwue RC, Ocheni S, Madu AJ

Background: Anticoagulation is an essential lifesaving management practice indicated for arterial, venous and intracardiac thromboembolism. Aim: This study was undertaken to examine the utilization of anticoagulation services in University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu (UNTH) Nigeria. Materials and Methods: This retrospective study involved assessing data from folders of subjects on anticoagulation and monitoring in UNTH, Enugu. Patients’ profile, risk factors, diagnosis, indication for oral anticoagulation, anticoagulant used; target, monitoring, outcome and complications of anticoagulation were recorded. Results: A total of 26 patients over a period of 5 years were on anticoagulation and laboratory monitoring done in UNTH. The mean age of the patients was 53.4 years and more females than males were on anticoagulation and monitoring (F14:M12). The most common indications for anticoagulation include deep venous thrombosis/pulmonary embolism, congestive heart failure with atrial fibrillation and mitral valve disease with atrial fibrillation. Desired clinical outcome was achieved in eight patients 8/26 (30.8%). Minor bleeding was the only complication reported in three patients 3/26 (11.5%). Conclusion: The absence of diagnostic tools and anticoagulation monitoring clinics and the apprehension of adverse effects have combined to make this lifesaving treatment inaccessible to many patients in Nigeria.

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