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Keywords:

  • coagulation testing;
  • hemostasis;
  • inflammation

Abstract

Objective – To review the hemostasis literature relevant to development of coagulopathy in the critically ill equine patient.

Data Source – Original scientific and review articles.

Human Data Synthesis – Inflammation plays a critical role in the activation and amplification of clot formation, as well as the impairment of physiologic anticoagulant mechanisms, and fibrinolysis. Earlier identification of coagulopathy in patients at risk and restoration of physiologic hemostasis may result in better outcome. Development of scoring systems based on information other than coagulation markers alone may better identify patients with subclinical coagulopathy.

Veterinary Data Synthesis – Critically ill equine patients commonly at risk for coagulopathy include those with severe gastrointestinal disease, septic foals, and adults subjected to severe systemic inflammatory response syndrome. Publications provide information regarding coagulation markers helpful for identification of hemostatic dysfunction in specific patient populations, as well as information regarding the influence of coagulopathy on outcome. Data regarding clinically relevant information on therapeutic intervention are lacking.

Conclusions – The relationship between inflammation and endotoxemia and development of coagulopathy is better understood in both human patients and the critically ill equine patient. Prospective clinical trials evaluating clinically relevant and financially feasible approaches to treatment are still needed.