Objectives: Patients requiring chronic anticoagulation therapy (CAT) with warfarin require special attention perioperatively. We retrospectively reviewed our experience of treating patients requiring CAT who underwent robotic-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) to evaluate the role of perioperative bridging therapy. Methods: A total of 60 patients receiving cat with warfarin who underwent rarp were identified as having been treated using 1 of 2 protocols: protocol 1, the cessation of CAT 7 days before surgery and its resumption the evening of catheter removal (postoperative day 4-21); or protocol 2, warfarin substituted with perioperative subcutaneous low-molecular-weight heparin, with oral anticoagulation restarted after catheter removal. The decision to use perioperative bridging was made in conjunction with the patient's primary care physician. The peri- and postoperative parameters and complications were compared with a matched control group of 181 contemporary patients who underwent RARP but did not require CAT. Results: The most common indications for CAT were atrial fibrillation (58%) and recurrent deep vein thrombosis (22%). Compared with the control cohort, the patients with CAT had an increased operative time (189 vs 170 minutes, P = .005) and hospital stay (1.4 vs 1.1 days, P = .004). The estimated blood loss (123.9 vs 146.6 mL, P = .07) and 24-hour change in hemoglobin (2.2 vs 2.3 g/dL, P = .44) were similar. When comparing the 2 protocols, a significantly greater transfusion rate (23% vs 2%, P = .042) occurred with protocol 2, but no increase was seen in the complication or readmission rate. One nonfatal thromboembolic event occurred in 1 patient treated using protocol 1. Conclusions: The results of our study have shown that RARP can be performed safely in patients requiring CAT, with and without bridging therapy. Patients in protocol 2 had greater transfusion rates, but this did not translate into increased complications or readmissions.
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