Venous thromboembolism prophylaxis practices for patients with sickle cell disease prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic

Jennifer Davila, William B. Mitchell, Kerry Morrone, Ellen J. Silver, Caterina P. Minniti, Henny H. Billett, Payal C. Desai, Sarah H. O'Brien, Deepa Manwani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) are predisposed to a hypercoagulable state due to alterations in the coagulation system. Despite concern for the development of venous thromboembolism (VTE) in this population, there are no standardized guidelines for routine thromboprophylaxis.The objective of this study was to assess thromboprophylaxis practices of adult and pediatric treaters of SCD before and during the coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.A cross-sectional electronic survey was distributed to pediatric and adult hematology oncology practitioners through seven SCD-specific interest groups between May 29, 2020, and July 13, 2020.Of 93 total responses, 14% (N = 13) reported they only treat patients more than 21 years old; 38.7% (N = 36) only treat patients 0-21 years old and 47.3% (N = 44) reported they treat both. Our study showed that before the COVID-19 pandemic, 96% of adult practitioners would recommend pharmacologic thromboprophylaxis, mechanical thromboprophylaxis or both for hospitalized adults with thromboprophylaxis, but only 76% of pediatric treaters would recommend any thromboprophylaxis in hospitalized children (P < 0.0001), with 24% of pediatric treaters choosing no thromboprophylaxis at all.During the COVID-19 pandemic, pharmacologic thromboprophylaxis specifically was recommended for adults by 94% of treaters and for pediatric patients by 76% of treaters. These findings suggest that despite the lack of evidence-based thromboprophylaxis guidelines in adults and children with thromboprophylaxis, subspecialty treaters routinely provide pharmacologic thromboprophylaxis in their adult patients and will modify their practice in pediatric patients who are considered at a high risk for VTE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-477
Number of pages7
JournalBlood Coagulation and Fibrinolysis
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • direct oral anticoagulants
  • sickle cell disease
  • thromboprophylaxis


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