1Division of Hepatobiliary Surgery, Department of Surgery, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, NC, USA.
2Division of Hepatobiliary Surgery, Department of Surgery, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, NC, USA. David.Iannitti@atriumhealth.org.
3Division of Hepatopancreaticobiliary Surgery, Department of Surgery, Carolinas Medical Center, 1025 Morehead Medical Drive, Suite 600, Charlotte, NC, 28204, USA. David.Iannitti@atriumhealth.org.
Background: Thrombocytopenia is a common finding in patients with chronic liver disease. It is associated with poor clinical outcomes due to increased risk of bleeding after even minor procedures. We sought to determine an algorithm for pre-operative platelet transfusion in patients with cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) undergoing laparoscopic microwave ablation (MIS-MWA).
Methods: A retrospective review identified all patients with cirrhosis and HCC who underwent MIS-MWA at a single tertiary institution between 2007 and 2019. Demographics, pre-operative and post-operative laboratory values, transfusion requirements, and bleeding events were collected. The analyzed outcome of bleeding risk included any transfusion received intra-operatively or a transfusion or surgical intervention post-operatively. Logistic regression models were created to predict bleeding risk and identify patients who would benefit from pre-operative transfusion.
Results: There were 433 patients with cirrhosis and HCC who underwent MIS-MWA identified; of these, 353 patients had complete laboratory values and were included. Bleeding risk was evaluated through bivariate analysis of statistically and clinically significant variables. The accuracy of both models was substantiated through bootstrap validation for 500 iterations (model 1: ROC 0.8684, Brier score 0.0238; model 2: ROC 0.8363, Brier score 0.0252). The first model captured patients with both thrombocytopenia and anemia: platelet count < 60 × 109 / L (OR 7.75, p 0.012, CI 1.58-38.06) and hemoglobin < 10 gm/dL (OR 5.76, p 0.032, CI 1.16-28.63). The second model captured patients with thrombocytopenia without anemia: platelet count < 30 × 109/L (OR 8.41, p 0.05, CI 0.96-73.50) and hemoglobin > 10 gm/dL (OR 0.16, p 0.026, CI 0.031-0.80).
Conclusion: The prediction of patients with cirrhosis and HCC requiring pre-operative platelet transfusions may help to avoid bleeding complications after invasive procedures. This study needs to be prospectively validated and ultimately may be beneficial in assessment of novel therapies for platelet-based clinical treatment in liver disease.