Platelet (PLT) and plasma transfusion remain the mainstay hemostatic therapy for perioperative bleeding. Several studies have indicated that acquired fibrinogen (FIB) deficiency can be the primary cause of bleeding after cardiac surgery. The aim of this study was to compare hematologic and transfusion profiles between the first-line FIB replacement and PLT transfusion in post–cardiac surgical bleeding.

Study Design and Methods

In this prospective, randomized, open-label study, 20 adult patients who underwent valve replacement or repair and fulfilled preset visual bleeding scale were randomized to 4 g of FIB or 1 unit of apheresis PLTs. Primary endpoints included hemostatic condition in the surgical field and 24-hour hemostatic product usage. Hematologic data, clinical outcome, and safety data were collected up to the 28th day postoperative visit.


In patients who received the first-line FIB concentrate (n = 10), the visual bleeding scale improved after intervention, and the incidence of PLT transfusion and total plasma donor exposure were lower compared to the PLT group (n = 10). Postintervention FIB level was statistically higher (209 mg/dL vs. 165 mg/dL) in the FIB group than in the PLT group, but PLT count and prothrombin were lower. There were no statistical differences in the postoperative blood loss and red blood cell transfusion between two groups.


Our preliminary data indicate that the primary FIB replacement may potentially reduce the incidence of PLT transfusion and the number of donor exposures. Plasma FIB level of 200 mg/dL is attainable with a single dose of 4 g, and this level seems to mitigate bleeding despite moderately decreased thrombin generation.