Prothrombin gene G20210A mutation and elevated anticardiolipin antibodies in a patient with combined portal-mesenteric vein thrombosis

Friederich, Patrick; Putensen, Christian; Stüber, Frank
October 2000
Intensive Care Medicine;Oct2000, Vol. 26 Issue 10, p1571
Academic Journal
A 29-year-old man was admitted to the ICU after emergency laparotomy for portal-mesenteric vein thrombosis. Under continuous intravenous heparin therapy the portal-mesenteric shunt occluded on the first postoperative day. After thrombectomy the heparin dose was increased, and the patient remained free of symptoms (partial thromboplastin time 53 s). Two days later abdominal distension developed concomitantly with ventilatory distress due to a large retroperitoneal hematoma. The patient was mechanically ventilated and underwent the third consecutive laparotomy for the hematoma removal on the fifth day. During the surgical procedure the abdomen was packed with towels to stop multiple bleeding sites. The heparin dose was reduced, aiming for a partial thromboplastin time of 30–35 s. Initial coagulation tests revealed increased levels of anticardiolipin immunoglobulin G. After removal of the surgical towels the patient was successfully weaned from mechanical ventilation and discharged from the ICU. Two weeks later genomic testing revealed that he also had a G20210A mutation of the prothrombin gene. Both, increased levels of anticardiolipin immunoglobulin G and the G20210A mutation of the prothrombin gene predispose to thrombosis. Increased levels of anticardiolipin immunoglobulin G may also cause bleeding. Long-term anticoagulation therapy was started with a vitamin K antagonist, and 2 months later a follow-up showed that the patient had no further symptoms of portal-mesenteric vein thrombosis or bleeding. This case illustrates that the convergence of multiple risk factors, including genetic defects, must be considered in patients suffering from thrombosis in unusual sites


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